Praise for Mastering the Leadership Role in Project Management
“Alexander Laufer is one of the world’s wisest authorities on projects and how they work. His cognitive authority is based on many years of studying and working at project-based organizations and universities. Based on Alexander’s thoughtful judgment, this book—unlike so many anodyne and dull business texts—has the ring of ‘ground truth’ and authenticity that can’t be bought or faked. It has to be earned. Projects are an old and a new form for designing work, and this book is a wonderfully readable and reliable guide to the new world of work, knowledge, and respect. Learn from it!” —From the Foreword by Larry Prusak, Founder and Former Executive Director of the Institute for Knowledge Management (IKM); Currently teaching in the Information and Knowledge Program at Columbia University “I thoroughly enjoyed this book! The stories bring home the essence of what good projects need—good leadership. They present real women and men in very difficult situations, who succeed by doing what is right for the project and end up bringing the project team together to believe in the project. As valuable as project management’s best practices are, they can’t instill leadership. This book is the insight we need to pass on to the next generation. Thank you for writing this book!” —Charlene (“Chuck”) Walrad, Managing Director, Davenport Consulting, Inc.; Vice President, Standards Activities, Board of Governors, IEEE Computer Society “Alexander Laufer’s well-articulated and insightful stories helped me to identify subtle, but significant, opportunities for self-improvement that I have overlooked for so many years. I realized that small changes in my style can not only improve project outcome, but can also have considerable positive impacts on the rest of my team.” —Robert J. Simmons, Founder, CEO, CTO, ConXtech Inc. “Mastering the Leadership Role in Project Management is truly a guilty pleasure to take the time to read. In today’s fast-paced environment, Alexander and his colleagues have captured the essence of what project managers must do to deliver remarkable results—no matter where they work—by leading, not following, a scripted checklist. The book is written in bite-sized portions, so you can see what it takes to lead in today’s world.” —W. Scott Cameron, Global Project Management Technology Process Owner, Procter & Gamble Company

“Alexander Laufer’s book on project leadership fills a long-standing void in management and leadership understanding. This book will teach and entertain anyone who has been in awe of great leaders and aspires to be a better leader. Readers will appreciate the recurring concept of ‘unlearning’ outdated concepts and practices. The book brings to life valuable lessons that are relevant to managers at every level in their career. Mastering the Leadership Role in Project Management is required reading for project managers who would like insights on how to improve their skills and get better project results.” —Nadine Chin-Santos, Senior Project Manager, Assistant Vice President, Parsons Brinckerhoff “I was enthralled by the stories in this book on leadership in project management, as it corresponds to my recent focus on adaptive leadership. Stories help us to learn, and Alexander Laufer’s book contains wonderful stories about leadership by great leaders. These are stories about real projects, from a cross-section of project types, which have two common themes: the dynamics of projects and the importance of giving priority to ‘developing collaborative relations, fostering alliances, and giving people a sense of confidence in themselves.’ If you want to lead projects, as opposed to administer them, then read these fascinating stories.” —Jim Highsmith, Executive Consultant at ThoughtWorks; Author, Agile Project Management “We learn leadership best by observing great leaders, but most project managers rarely have an opportunity to do that…until now. In Mastering the Leadership Role in Project Management, Alexander Laufer introduces us to exceptional project leaders, the best of the best, and allows us to observe, in riveting narratives, how they plan, problem solve, and inspire their teams to deliver remarkable results.” —Hugh Woodward, Former Chair, Project Management Institute “These stories tell how real people brought themselves fully to the management of uniquely complex and risky projects and found a way through. There is no easy success or bragging reported here. Rather, people tell in their own voice what they saw, how they understood the situation, and which factors shaped their actions. The terrain is challenging. Mistakes are made and lessons are learned. People grow as they find their way through. This would be a great book for project leaders to read and discuss, story by story, and learn from the practices reflected in each one.”  —Gregory A. Howell, President, Lean Construction Institute

Mastering the Leadership Role in Project Management

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Mastering the Leadership Role in Project Management Practices that Deliver Remarkable Results Alexander Laufer .

Vice President. please contact U. Pearson Education Canada.A. For sales outside the U. For more information. Ltd. please contact International Sales at international@pearsoned. Printed in the United States of America First Printing: April 2012 ISBN-10: 0-13-262034-0 ISBN-13: 978-0-13-262034-5 Pearson Education LTD. New Jersey 07458 FT Press offers excellent discounts on this book when ordered in quantity for bulk purchases or special sales.S. 1-800382-3419.V. Pte. corpsales@pearsontechgroup. Pearson Education Publisher: Tim Moore Associate Publisher and Director of Marketing: Amy Neidlinger Executive Editor: Jeanne Glasser Editorial Assistant: Pamela Boland Operations Specialist: Jodi Kemper Assistant Marketing Manager: Megan Graue Cover Designer: Chuti Prasertsith Managing Editor: Kristy Hart Project Editor: Jovana San Nicolas-Shirley Copy Editor: Ginny Munroe Proofreader: Gill Editorial Services Senior Indexer: Cheryl Lenser Senior Compositor: Gloria Schurick Manufacturing Buyer: Dan Uhrig © 2012 by Alexander Laufer Publishing as FT Press Upper Saddle River. Ltd. All rights reserved. Corporate and Government Sales. The Library of Congress cataloging-in-publication data is on file. Pte.. without permission in writing from the publisher. in any form or by any means. Pearson Education Singapore. Pearson Education—Japan Pearson Education Malaysia. de C. . Limited. Ltd. Pearson Educación de Mexico. Pearson Education Australia PTY. Company and product names mentioned herein are the trademarks or registered trademarks of their respective owners. Ltd. No part of this book may be reproduced.

Ed. my dear wife and best friend.From Alex: To Yochy. Dora. and the loving family we have raised together From Alex. Jeff. and Zvi: Our sincere thanks to all the project leaders who allowed us to study their challenging projects and to share their remarkable stories . Don. Alistair. Dan.

. . . . . . 47 Chapter 2 Building of Memory: Managing Creativity Through Action Alexander Laufer. . . . 8 Description of the Cases. . . . . 1 Learning from Stories. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 55 Final Stages: Making Progress Through Versatility. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 65 . . . . . . . 38 We’re Married Now . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 51 Initial Stages: Making Progress by Splitting . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 4 Learning from the Best. . . . . . . . . . . . . and the Specific Context . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Jeffrey Russell . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 14 Chapter 1 Developing a Missile: The Power of Autonomy and Learning Alexander Laufer. . . . . . . . . xi About the Author. Management. . . . . . . . . . . . xv Introduction: Learning from the Best Practitioners Alexander Laufer . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 22 We Would Shoot Granny for a Dollar . . . . . . . . . . . . xiv About the Contributors . 10 Endnotes . . 1 Stuck in the ’60s . . . . . . . . . . . . Dan Ward. . . . . . . . . 7 On Leadership. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Alistair Cockburn . . .Contents Foreword: Larry Prusak . . . . . . . 51 Middle Stages: Making Progress by Uniting . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 19 Doing Business More Like Business . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 19 Six Is Not Seven . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Zvi Ziklik. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .

. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 125 My Engineering Staff Shrunk from 80 to 12 . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 149 The Turbulent Birth of the Unilateral Disengagement . Don Cohen . . . . . . . . Edward Hoffman. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 141 Chapter 6 A Peaceful Evacuation: Building a Multi-Project Battalion by Leading Upward Alexander Laufer. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 71 Systems Are Our Best Friends . . . . . 100 Chapter 4 Transferring Harbor Cranes: Delivering a Bold Idea Through Meticulous Preparations and Quick Responsiveness Alexander Laufer. . 125 Partnership . 103 The Risk Reduction Phase . . . . 151 The Fight for the Makeup of the Battalion . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Edward Hoffman. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Dan Ward. 171 Nurturing the Culture of Location . . . . . . . . . . Don Cohen . . . . . . 94 Flight Party . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 71 I Was the Enemy . . . . . . . Alistair Cockburn . . . . . . . . . . 76 Change of Venue. Zvi Ziklik. . . . . . . . . . . . . Zvi Ziklik. . . . 130 Constancy of Purpose . . . . . . . . . . . 114 The Constant Vigilance Phase . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 171 “Good Enough” Is Good Enough . . . . . . 164 Chapter 7 Exploring Space: Shaping Culture by Exploiting Location Alexander Laufer. . . . . . . . . . 149 The Systematic Preparations of the Israeli Defense Forces . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 103 The Entrepreneurial Phase . . . . . 87 People Matter the Most . . . . . . . . . Dora Cohenca-Zall . . . . . . . 175 . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . ix Chapter 3 Flying Solar-Powered Airplanes: Soaring High on Spirit and Systems Alexander Laufer. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Jeffrey Russell . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 156 The Speedy Implementation of the Evacuation . . . . 118 Chapter 5 A Successful Downsizing: Developing a Culture of Trust and Responsibility Alexander Laufer. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .

. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 189 Chapter 8 Building a Dairy Plant: Accelerating Speed Through Splitting and Harmonizing Alexander Laufer. . . . . . . . . . . . 198 Splitting and Harmonizing . . . . . . . . . . . 203 Epilogue Practices for Project Leadership Alexander Laufer . . So You Can Manage. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 222 Practice Five: Shape the Right Culture . 214 Practice Two: Adjust Project Practices to the Specific Context . . . 193 Gaining Independence . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 218 Practice Four: Do Your Utmost to Recruit the Right People . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 213 First Practice: Embrace the “Living Order” Concept . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 216 Practice Three: Challenge the Status Quo. . . . 193 Shifting from Park to Drive . . . . . . . . . 239 . Dora Cohenca-Zall . . . . . . . . . .x Mastering the Leadership roLe in projeCt ManageMent A Gentle Touch. . . . . . . . 236 Index . . . . . . . . . . 232 Practice Nine: Lead. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Jeffrey Russell. . . . . 183 When “Good Enough” Is Not Good Enough . . . Monitor. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 227 Practice Seven: Use Face-to-Face Communication as the Primary Communication Mode . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . and Anticipate . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 230 Practice Eight: Be Action-Oriented and Focus on Results . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 224 Practice Six: Plan. .

would never suffice for the railroads. and shipping concerns and proved to be a great global success as far as wealth production. mining. was the military. For one thing. Now. new technologies produced in the U. This. nothing ever comes from nothing. The fact is plain and clear: Most work today needs to be done very. very differently than it was done in these great industrial companies of the past century. cotton factories.S. This “knowledge . However. The gross output of the world increased approximately 12 times from 1880 to 1990—a record that is unlikely to ever be repeated. much of the wealth being created in the more advanced economies is based far more on knowledge and other intangibles than on the manipulation of any materials. with its paternalistic management structure. and to manage their final mass-produced products. steel mills. and munition works that were cropping up all over Western Europe and the Northeastern U. to manage the new factories and mill workers.S. As Horace said. and Europe (and later Japan) allowed complex tasks to be performed by a much larger number of employees than ever before. This model was readily and quickly adapted to all sorts of manufacturing. artisan-based division of labor. as seen in Adam Smith’s famous pin factory. the hallmarks of any military structure—at least up until the past 20 years or so—were command and control bureaucratic hierarchies with rigid rules and regulations and stiff penalties for noncompliance. The management structures that were adapted to these new organisms were based on the only system that anyone had ever seen and that allowed for managing many men over time and space and enabled them to perform at least somewhat complex tasks. The older. Let’s explore why and how this is happening. By the mid-nineteenth century.Foreword We no longer work as we used to. Something new had to be developed to manage this new form of work. chemical plants. there is one great problem with this model in the twenty-first century. of course.

Just think of the size and scale and output of some of the largest firms in our lives— Google. The book also highlights elements of successful project management that are scarcely found in standard texts. less than 15 percent of the work performed in these countries is in manufacturing. And because form follows function. this is already going on. The most common new form of knowledgebased work where this is already going on is in projects—projects of every shape and form. now the wealthiest firm on earth—whose competitive edge is based on design. and even Apple.S. a form of knowledge! Even in former manufacturing giants. Knowledge workers surely do not want to be treated like modern versions of nineteenth-century mill workers. media. Based on Alex’s thoughtful judgment. Alexander Laufer is one of the world’s wisest authorities on projects and how they work. it stands to reason that the way plants were managed wouldn’t be at all useful to any organization that is strongly or even moderately based on knowledge and its applications. the medical. and finance giants.xii Mastering the Leadership roLe in projeCt ManageMent economy” is every bit as “real” as the industrial one. Microsoft. and the U. such as trust. and autonomy.. In many places. the UK. It has to be earned. No one wants to return to the world where Henry Ford famously asked: “Why do I want to pay for a worker’s head when I only want the muscle in his arm?” If we are all going to be working in organizations that develop and produce and extensively work with knowledge. . They not only want autonomy and respect. are seen throughout the text. this book— unlike so many anodyne and dull business texts—has the ring of “ground truth” and authenticity that can’t be bought or faked. Social capital issues. such as Germany. which are project-based. culture. His cognitive authority is based on many years of studying and working at organizations and universities. but they also want to work with peers in supportive knowledge-sharing environments where everyone can learn and contribute. then we also have to change the very way in which we structure the work. And that is the focus of this wonderful book.

and respect. Learn from it! —Larry Prusak. xiii as they should be. Projects are an old and a new form for designing work. and this book is a wonderfully readable and reliable guide to the new world of work. Founder and former executive director of the Institute for Knowledge Management (IKM) and currently teaching in the Information and Knowledge Program at Columbia University . knowledge.

the two most recent ones are Breaking the Code of Project Management (Macmillan. Currently he is also a visiting professor at the University of Wisconsin-Madison. He is a member of the editorial review board of the Project Management Journal. Academy Sharing Knowledge. Dr.About the Author Dr. Laufer is the author or coauthor of five books. where he also served as the dean of the faculty. 2009) and Shared Voyage: Learning and Unlearning from Remarkable Projects (NASA History Office. He has served as the editorin-chief of the NASA Academy of Program and Project Leadership Magazine. 2005). Alexander Laufer is a chaired professor of civil engineering at the Technion-Israel Institute of Technology. He has also served as the director of the Center for Project Leadership at Columbia University. . and as a member of the advisory board of the NASA Academy of Program and Project Leadership.

use cases. Knowledge Management. Oxford University Press. He is also coauthor of In Good Company: How Social Capital Makes Organizations Work and Better Together: Restoring the American Community. Alistair Cockburn is president of Humans and Technology. strategic planning. and blog can be found online at http://alistair. particularly for large infrastructure projects in their early phases of project definition. process design. devoted to stories of project management and engineering His articles. Dora Cohenca-Zall is an independent project management consultant. talks. He is the author of The Crystal Agile Methodologies. He created and edited Knowledge Directions.Phil in English from Yale University. cockburn. He received both his BA and M. and was voted one of the “All-Time Top 150 i-Technology Heroes” in 2007 for his pioneering work on use cases and co-creation of the agile software development movement. project management. and other journals. and procurement strategies. Prior to these projects. He is an internationally renowned IT strategist and an expert on agile development. Knowledge and Process Management. Don Cohen is managing editor of NASA’s ASK Magazine. the journal of the IBM Institute for Knowledge Management. she was involved in two of the largest projects in Israel: the Carmel Tunnels project in Haifa and the Light Rail Train project in Tel Aviv. Inc.About the Contributors Dr. three Jolt-awarded books on software development. In recent years. Dr. she worked as a . poems. He is known for his lively presentations and interactive workshops. and coauthor of The Agile Manifesto and The Project Management Declaration of Interdependence. His articles on organizational knowledge and social capital have appeared in Harvard Business Review. and object-oriented design. California Management Review. His chapter on “Designing Organizations to Enhance Social Capital” appears in the Handbook of Knowledge Creation and Management.

Sc and Ph. Edward J. P. academia.. He serves as adjunct faculty at The George Washington University. He holds a Doctorate. professional associations.E. Russell served as Professor and Chair in the Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering (CEE) at the UW. He works within NASA as well as with leaders of industry. In this role.D. She obtained her BS in civil engineering in Paraguay and her M. Hoffman is the director of the NASA Academy of Program/Project and Engineering Leadership (APPEL) and NASA’s Chief Knowledge Officer. and other government agencies to develop the agency’s capabilities in program and project management and engineering. is Vice Provost for Lifelong Learning and Dean of Continuing Studies at the University of WisconsinMadison (UW). He .xvi Mastering the Leadership roLe in projeCt ManageMent consultant to the UN in large organizational change projects in Paraguay. 2000). and speaks frequently at conferences and associations. Hoffman has written numerous journal articles. Prior to assuming his current position. Dr. Russell. at the Technion in Israel. He has published more than 200 technical papers in addition to two books. He has been honored with a number of national and regional awards. as well as nine best paper awards. Dr. Jeffrey S. He served as editor-in-chief of the American Society of Civil Engineers (ASCE) Journal of Management in Engineering (1995–2000) and as founding editor-in-chief of the ASCE publication Leadership and Management in Engineering (2000–2003). Dr. 2005) and Project Management Success Stories: Lessons of Project Leaders (Wiley. She teaches project management courses to graduate students at both the Technion-Israel Institute of Technology and the University of Haifa. coauthored Shared Voyage: Learning and Unlearning from Remarkable Projects (NASA. he is responsible for leading the university’s programs and services for lifelong learners and nontraditional students. as well as Master of Arts and Master of Science degrees from Columbia University in the area of social and organizational psychology. He received a Bachelor of Science in Psychology from Brooklyn College in 1981. South America. Dr.

an MS in engineering management from Western New England College. imagery exploitation systems. His company specializes in managing the design and execution of very large and highly complex construction projects in Israel. Col. and the Information Systems Security Association Journal. Epstein and Sons. he served as the vice president for Engineering for Druker Construction company. communication infrastructures. was recently elected to the National Academy of Construction. Previously. at the time. and served as principal or coprincipal investigator for more than $14 million of publicly and privately funded research. SIGNAL. Zvi Ziklik is the general manager of the Haifa branch of A. . including a design book titled The Simplicity Cycle. He is also the author of seven books. His background includes laser research. Gilbert.D. Solel Boneh. Dr. Dr. satellite projects. When Drucker was acquired by the largest construction company in Israel. He holds a BS in electrical engineering from Clarkson University. Dan Ward is chief of acquisition innovation in the Air Force’s Acquisition Process Office at the Pentagon.D. where he is currently a senior adjunct lecturer. a Chicago-based international company. including 26 Ph. and an MS in systems engineering from the Air Force Institute of Technology. one of the fastest growing companies in Israel. in industrial engineering from the TechnionIsrael Institute of Technology. Lt. and social networking for the military. xvii has advised over 100 graduate students. students. He holds a BS and a Ph. Harpers. Russell served on the ASCE Board of Directors (1997–2000). and is presently Chair of the ASCE Committee on Academic Prerequisites for Professional Practice. His writings have appeared in Defense AT&L Magazine. he became vice president for Marketing.

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I gravitated toward an analytical approach because of my background in operations research.. and give the people who work for me a sense of confidence in themselves.. foster alliances. The original program manager of JASSM.“I knew that at JASSM.Most of my peers in program management think that the most important aspects of our job are making decisions.. The first was not to repeat any of the mistakes of the past.. I was program manager for the Joint Direct Attack Munition (JDAM) missile. At first.. where everything is 1 . and controlling performance.. was given two major mandates. my priorities are to develop collaborative relations. In contrast.Introduction Learning from the Best Practitioners by Alexander Laufer Learning from Stories “In late December 1995. and I wasn’t happy about it at all..“. conducting reviews.“I stumbled into an understanding of this when I got involved in program management many years ago.. The second mandate was to get started quickly. At the time. The Tri-Service Standoff Attack Missile (TSSAM) had been cancelled after six years and several billion dollars in cost overruns. I was brought up in the Robert McNamara school of management. I would have to start over and would probably have to cope with a more difficult environment.. As soon as I got there. I got a call to come in and talk to one of my bosses at the Eglin Air Force Base. I was informed that I was being switched off JDAM to run the Joint Air-to-Surface Standoff Missile (JASSM) program.. meaning the TSSAM program.

They were in a state of disbelief after learning that their boss had been fired over the Christmas holiday. to essentially give up.. then it doesn’t exist. but then—once they figured out that giving up wasn’t an option—to step back and examine all their assumptions.. but I would never have told the team that. If we don’t do it in six months. first. Out of the blue. I showed up and told them. He had worked with them on this program from the beginning and was well liked. ‘What do I really need to do to achieve this goal?’” This is an excerpt from the story of Air Force program manager Terry Little. Programs move ahead because of the activities of people..’“. ‘We are going to get this program on contract within six months.. all their beliefs. all the things that were in their heads as a result of their experiences and what they had been told in the past. I would have been happy to be on contract at the end of seven months.. Yet. I wanted something so outrageous that it would cause them.“What I wanted to do was set a goal that would challenge these folks to look at things in an entirely new way. but did they have anything to do with determining whether the project was going to be successful? Not at all. I could do the fanciest calculations in the world. at project completion.I called a meeting the first day back after New Year’s with the 20 people who were working on JASSM. but none of the models I was using measured that critical ingredient for success. there is no program.. or even eight months..The truth is that I pulled the number six out of my hat. I didn’t want a schedule that they felt they could achieve just by working on weekends or figuring out a handful of inventive ways to do things. who was drafted to turn around a program that appeared to be on its way to swift cancellation.“It didn’t take me long to figure out that this idea was bankrupt.“. Terry’s team received the highest acquisition honor of the Department of . I had managed to deliver several major projects successfully by implementing practices that were designed to fit the world as I saw it and that often differed from the accepted practices.“Experience was my greatest teacher.2 Mastering the Leadership roLe in project ManageMent quantifiable—if we can’t build a model of something.. and to ask themselves with a clean slate.

As Terry Little tells us. how it relates to project management. and how these practices are implemented in different circumstances However. and real-life stories told by credible and successful managers may serve as an effective substitute for observation. “At first. convey easily digestible complex messages. convert tacit knowledge to explicit knowledge. and even the unlearning process. where everything is quantifiable—if we can’t build a model of something. it is sometimes necessary to first go through a process of unlearning.” You will see when you read his full story. induce reflection. It didn’t take me long to figure out that this idea was bankrupt. Yet. Stories can stimulate curiosity. We all know that most people love to read stories and that a good story can serve as a very powerful learning tool. that the beliefs and practices of project managers and their team members are often influenced by outdated concepts that must first be abandoned.1 By reading the eight stories and reflecting on them. IntroductIon • LearnIng from the Best PractItIoners 3 Defense. and be remembered easily. will evolve primarily from the experiences accumulated by applying the . prior to learning. The use of stories becomes more important for unlearning purposes because they are usually far more effective than analytical explanations or dry principles. People’s minds are changed more through observation than through argument. The full story is one of the eight remarkable cases presented in this book. as well as all the other stories in the book. I gravitated toward an analytical approach. the learning process. you can acquire rich knowledge about two related subjects: • Project leadership: Its different facets. then it doesn’t exist. and how it is fulfilled in different circumstances • Project practices: The specific practices that successful project managers apply in exercising their leadership and management roles.

This is how..” A half a century later. P. as do all the telephone calls made around the world in 1984. A year in a day is exactly how it feels sometimes. tells us: “This new approach didn’t immediately solve my problems. and by applying them and reflecting on them.4 Mastering the Leadership roLe in project ManageMent practices. the use of which will lead them to new ways of thinking.. Just as Churchill astutely observed how we are stuck in our ways. but a better manager. and one can say that nothing has changed regarding the validity of Churchill’s painful insight. and the unlearning process usually requires more than a few cycles of using the tool and reflecting on the new experience. in spite of these vast world changes. “All of the world’s trade in 1949 happens in a single day today. I had finally begun to be a leader.W..”3 Yet. [I] felt like I was not only a different man. you will gradually master a leadership role in your projects. “Flying Solar-Powered Airplanes: Soaring High on Spirit and Systems”). don’t bother trying to teach them. note more . so did the British executive and a professor of project management. the British management business leader and philosopher Charles Handy vividly described the pace of change. and we are applying to the present the habits of the past. As Ray Morgan. the project manager in the Pathfinder case (see Chapter 3. “We are shaping the world faster than we can change ourselves.G. give them a tool. the theory of project management has remained largely unchanged. in 2001.” Stuck in the ’60s The great British leader Winston Churchill once said.”2 Using the new tool naturally triggers reflection. The Fifth Discipline Fieldbook explains it vividly: “Buckminster Fuller used to say that if you want to teach people a new way of thinking. Morris.. The practices described in the cases throughout this book will quickly become your new tools. What’s more. Instead. but it started me down the right road. all of the foreign exchange dealings in 1979 happen now in a single day.

“Bad Management Theories Are Destroying Good Management Practices. and speedy projects. but it might also adversely affect our performance.” Sumantra Ghoshal cites Kurt Lewin’s argument that “nothing is as practical as a good theory.” Peter Drucker added that the basic assumptions about reality largely determine what the discipline—scholars. in their study of software project failure.... For example.. For example. it [the theory of project management] is in many respects still stuck in a 1960s time warp. “Modern project management.” “In the present big. Albert Einstein explained it very succinctly: “It is the theory that describes what we can observe. practitioners—assumes to be reality.. in his 2005 seminal article. Keil and his colleagues reported that.”4 Practitioners must recognize that the prevailing theories and the basic assumptions of their discipline have a great impact on their own thoughts and practices. “Based on a survey of 376 CEOs. in a period that was more inflexible and less complex and where events changed less rapidly than today. traditional project management is simply counterproductive. whereas the average cost overrun of eight large road projects in Sweden was 86 percent.8 Results of software projects have received great attention in this regard. teachers. however. emerged..5 Thus. that the “obverse is also true: Nothing is as dangerous as a bad theory. it creates self-inflicting problems that seriously undermine performance. IntroductIon • LearnIng from the Best PractItIoners 5 recently that.” Ghoshal stresses. a theory stuck in the ’60s might not be just old and irrelevant. Indeed.”6 This is exactly what Koskela and Howell claim in their paper “The Underlying Theory of Project Management Is Obsolete. a recent study that examined ten large rail transit projects in the United States found that the projects suffered from an average cost overrun of 61 percent. complex. writers..”7 If conventional methods of project management can exacerbate rather than alleviate project problems. then we should not be surprised to learn about the widespread poor statistics of project results.. roughly 50 .

with a focus on permanent organizations rather than on temporary ones).. Cicmil et al. researchers are chronically wrestling with the problem of how to find ways to develop what is termed “relevant research. One possible reason is that the research is detached from practice.”9 Research by the Standish Group.”12 .” Yet. which has been doing surveys on information technology projects since 1994.10 These unsettling statistics beg the question of why management theories are still stuck in the ’60s... In research concerning general management (that is.6 Mastering the Leadership roLe in project ManageMent percent of all information technology projects fail to meet chief executive expectations.. The Standish Group’s 2006 survey showed that nearly two-thirds of all the information technology projects launched in that year either failed or ran into trouble. this is the simple and painful conclusion reached by Sandberg and Tsoukas in 2011: “There is an increasing concern that management theories are not relevant to practice. Delivering less functionality than was originally planned is also nothing out of the ordinary.”11 Attempting to respond to this concern in project management research.what is needed to improve project management practice is not more research on what should be done. project failure in the information technology world is almost standard operating procedure. we know very little about the ‘actuality’ of projectbased working and management. In short. This problem has not been confined only to researchers in project management. shows that overrunning the budget is common and that delivering projects late is normal. suggest that: “.

Procter & Gamble. approaches: • Field studies in advanced organizations using structured research tools.S. Du Pont. NASA. My focus on a selective sample of the best practitioners rather than using a sample representing the entire population of project managers is highly recommended by prominent authorities in management research.” I have collected firsthand data by alternately employing three different. Air Force. Skanska. What they need to know is how to differentiate between good and bad managers. among them: AT&T. yet complementary. and the U. IBM. General Motors. Instead of asking: “Why don’t practitioners use what researchers know?” I have reversed the question and asked: “Why don’t researchers use what practitioners know?” In this long learning pursuit of striving to develop a “theory of practice. population averages are meaningless to them. particularly interviews and observations of practitioners • Case studies and stories collected from more than 150 project managers in over 20 organizations • Consulting work to test interim results All of my studies were focused on the most competent practitioners affiliated with a great variety of “advanced” organizations. IntroductIon • LearnIng from the Best PractItIoners 7 Learning from the Best Studying the “actuality” of projects is exactly what I have attempted to do for more than two decades. • Excellence is a better teacher than mediocrity. therefore. The common arguments for this research approach are: • Management practitioners live in a world of extremes. Management is best learned by emulating exemplary role models.13 . Motorola.

and communication have been described in four previous books that I authored or co-authored. and the Specific Context Based on my studies. these issues can be accomplished without challenging conventional habits and practices. I found that even the most effective planning. adaptive problems might require the project manager to bypass company procedures in order to ensure that the best contractor in town will be selected to cope with an infeasible design or in order to instruct the designer to think outside the box and develop creative solutions to cope with unreasonable cost constraints. These problems require leadership. For example. collaboration. Other problems. only in recent years and with the help of the contributors to this book. they can be solved with knowledge and procedures already at hand. Management. I was able to uncover the common practices employed by successful project managers in order to cope with our dynamic environment. that is. Most of the problems encountered throughout project life are technical. These practices of planning. and often require new learning and changes in patterns of behavior. and risk management systems cannot eliminate the need for coping with frequent unexpected events and numerous problems throughout the life of a project. as well as the meaning of project management in this dynamic environment. In order to address these adaptive problems.15 . control. however. they are not so well defined. the project manager must be willing and able to make significant changes and to challenge the status quo. do not have clear solutions.8 Mastering the Leadership roLe in project ManageMent On Leadership. I was able to better understand the crucial role of project leadership in project success.14 However. In my studies. that is. are adaptive. Although solving problems such as how to accelerate project speed or replace a contractor might require great flexibility and high responsiveness. They just require good managerial skills. control.

He maintains. such as proponents of Agile Project Management. writers. there have been some notable exceptions.” Melgrati and Damiani make this point very eloquently: “Project management ideology is paradoxical because it focuses on repetitive aspects and ‘marginalizes’ the uniqueness and originality that should instead characterize the project. IntroductIon • LearnIng from the Best PractItIoners 9 The studies also reveal that while all projects require both leadership and management. however.” rather than on the “unique. particularly the assumption that “there is (or there must be) one right way to manage people.16 For the most part. the emphasis in the literature has typically been on the “standard” or the “common. that today these assumptions must be unlearned. and practitioners since the study of management first began in the 1930s. Johns presents evidence that management researchers are inclined to downplay the context or the specifics of a given situation. the father of “scientific management. the project management literature has not given explicit treatment to context issues and has thus implicitly endorsed the “one best way” approach.18 .” Thus.” Drucker further argues that this assumption is totally at odds with reality and totally counterproductive. According to Johns.”17 However. Peter Drucker argues that several assumptions regarding the realities of management have been held by most scholars. which was the favorite phrase of Fredrick Taylor. it seems that context-free research is somehow perceived as being more scientific and prestigious than contextspecific research. giving voice to a new approach that challenges the “one best way” and recommends tailoring the project management process to the situation. the way in which leadership and management are exercised depends on the specific context of the project.

collaboration. four from the U. such as planning. construction. and communication to the unique context of their projects. Thus. The uniqueness of the projects was assured by their geographic location and by the wide range of their industry and product settings (space. and one from Israel. weapons development. widely dispersed geographically)20 Upon reading each of the eight projects in this book.10 Mastering the Leadership roLe in project ManageMent Description of the Cases This is precisely the rationale behind the design of this book: to help the reader understand how successful project managers tailor practices. it will also become evident that in projects sharing common characteristics and coping with similar challenges.21 Following is a brief description of the eight projects and their key challenges: . it will become clear that there is no “one best way” for leading and managing a project. eight very successful projects. Yet. control. when considering the different types of projects.S. Rather. the project manager must tailor the project practices to the project’s unique context.19 The eight projects selected are divided into four groups. with two projects in each group. and four from Israel. and transportation).S. The key aspect defining each group is its uniquely different nature: • New Product Development • Repeated and Risky Tasks • Organizational Change • Complex Projects (large projects composed of many diverse components. the project managers use many practices in a like manner. were selected for this book. one from the U.

” Thus. Lockheed Martin. Moshe Safdie from Canada was selected. the building appeared to call for sculpturing more than construction. The contractor. During the early phases of the project. The know-how required to overcome the extraordinary difficulty in controlling . Repeated and Risky Tasks Flying Solar-Powered Airplanes: The Environmental Research Aircraft and Sensor Technology program. the project manager found that the design required the development of a revolutionary and very challenging product that had never before been implemented.” Building a Museum: Yad Vashem.S. Air Force: “We don’t have the time. with the participation of ten of the best architects in the world. Indeed. The objective is a dramatic reduction in acquisition time and funds. was told by the U. which had exceeded its budget estimates by record levels. we don’t have the funds. We want a missile in half the time for half the price. it became clear very quickly that the only way to produce an affordable missile was to stop doing “business as usual. Following an international competition. IntroductIon • LearnIng from the Best PractItIoners 11 New Product Development Developing a Missile: The Joint Air-to-Surface Standoff Missile program was established to replace the cancelled TriService Standoff Attack Missile program. was charged with the task of converting Unmanned Aerial Vehicles (UAV) into research platforms. You will have the freedom to put together your approach that meets our three key performance parameters. and we don’t have the answers. the official Israeli memorial complex for the victims of the Holocaust. and at times it seemed that its execution was just not feasible. was embarking on the addition of a new history museum. You either understand that or you are out of the game. established by NASA.

and tested and licensed by the manufacturer. Air Force was rife with problems. Still. recomposed through a very meticulous process. not the least of which was the mandated drawdown plan that had not been met. one company that was brave enough to embark on the adventure with NASA. When the new project manager arrived. which was on a dramatically different management path.S. If this was to be done. One company decided to employ a pioneering method never before attempted anywhere in the world: transferring the cranes by sea. . Organizational Change Downsizing: The Advanced Medium Range Air-to-Air Missile program of the U. as the reforms she had in mind entailed a partnership with her industry counterpart (Raytheon).12 Mastering the Leadership roLe in project ManageMent the risks involved was enough to put most companies off. did indeed find that it faced a daunting technological challenge: to operate an aircraft that was both light enough to fly and large enough to be powered by the sun and carry meaningful payloads. She soon found herself in the center of a maelstrom. into about 70 pieces each. she discovered that not everyone at the base was keen on change. AeroVironment. The traditional method is to dismantle the cranes. it would be through careful attention to the design of the aircraft and its systems—and by doing business in an entirely new way. despite strong pressure to maintain the status quo. she was motivated by a desire to do the right thing. thereby skipping altogether the lengthy and costly process of dismantling and recomposing the cranes. Transferring Harbor Cranes: The Israeli Ports Authority issued a bid for transferring four huge harbor cranes from the port of Haifa to another port in Israel. each weighing up to 400 tons and reaching as high as 40 meters. They are then transported over land on huge trucks.

Ariel Sharon. Sharon called on the Israeli Defense Forces (IDF). was for years the greatest activist behind the Jewish settlements in the Gaza Strip. IntroductIon • LearnIng from the Best PractItIoners 13 Evacuation: The former Israeli Prime Minister. downgrading many features of their original design and adopting an emergency schedule. . and 12 battalions were specially organized to carry out this unique mission. as described in the story of a Lieutenant Colonel and his team who headed one of the battalions. Complex Projects Building a Spacecraft and Scientific Instruments: Under a novel co-leadership arrangement between NASA and Caltech. and it was soon in jeopardy of being cancelled. two years following the launch. The charge was accepted quite reluctantly. launched the biggest dairy plant in the Middle East. However. So the announcement of his decision to abandon the Strip. uproot the settlements. However. not everyone involved in the project. The implementation of his decision led to the largest series of demonstrations in Israel’s history. Building a Dairy Plant: When Tnuva. and evacuate all the inhabitants was met with shock by many and threatened to tear apart the Israeli population. Due to the enormity of the mission. the vision called for a “dream dairy” that would be equipped with the most advanced technology in the world. rather than the police. the company learned that its greatest rival was about to embark on a new dairy line that would threaten Tnuva’s domination in the field. Israel’s largest food manufacturer. The project had barely started when it already appeared to be quickly outspending its resources. three large organizations with marked geographical and cultural differences were faced with the development of a complex product within a fixed timetable. Tnuva’s management decided to make a radical change.

eds. and effective practices. C. Senge. you might find yourself “dialoging” with yourself and with these successful project managers.C.R. P. Human Inference: Strategies and Shortcomings of Social Judgment. P. A. and at times. 78. Kleiner. and gradually facilitate a change of mind and a change of practice. p. p. NJ: PrenticeHall. Mintzberg (2004).M. Roberts. Smith (1994). 28. You are now ready to embark on an enjoyable voyage of learning from eight remarkable stories.P. Most of all. 12. They will empower you.C. 81–92. Inevitably.” Organizational Symbolism. Teacher’s Stories: From Personal Narrative to Professional Insight. Pondy.R. Englewood Cliffs.” Organization Science. inspire you. Numagami suggests that the objective of management studies should be changed from a search for invariant laws of practical use to the encouragement of a reflective dialogue between researchers and practitioners and among practitioners. Nisbett and L. p. Tell Me a Story: A New Look at Real and Artificial Memory. Wilkins (1983). 143. R. 1: 2–15. CA: Jossey-Bass Publishers. 2. “The Infeasibility of Invariant Laws in Management Studies: A Reflective Dialogue in Defense of Case Studies. L. Bon Voyage! Endnotes 1. Dandridge. 254. T. Numagami (1998). G. and their learning and unlearning will undoubtedly affect you. Through these vivid stories. and that the case study is an excellent vehicle for such a dialogue. Managers Not MBAs—A Hard Look at the Soft Practice of Managing and Management Development. San Francisco: Berrett-Koehler Publishers Inc. Morgan. was so willing to abruptly abandon their state-of-the-art design. M. Isenberg (1995). New York. Their decisions and actions. and B. R. NY: Charles Scribner’s Sons.14 Mastering the Leadership roLe in project ManageMent in particular the German firm designing the equipment. pp. you are going to live through the experiences of the best project managers. . their successes and failures. pp.J Frost.. NY: Doubleday Currency.L. A. they will help you become both a better project manger and a better project leader. New York. The Fifth Discipline Fieldbook: Strategies and Tools for Building a Learning Organization. H. 9. you are going to reflect on their challenging problems. and T. creative solutions. San Francisco. Ross (1980). “Organizational Stories as Symbols to Control the Organization. CT: JAI Press. 50–1. Jalongo and J. Greenwich. Schank (1990).

Williams. 4.” Academy of Management Review 8. said back in 1983: “As a reviewer of papers. Cheney Mann. 7.” IEEE Transactions on Engineering Management 50. Turner (2004).” The Academy of Management Review 36. 3: 251–61.” Proceedings of PMI Research Conference. Balancing Agility and Discipline.P. Cambridge. UK: Thomas Telford Services. P. 6. Boston. “Bad Management Theories Are Destroying Good Management Practices. Richard Daft. 2: 338–360. who were dissatisfied with the traditional project management approach. Tribalism. Williams (1999). 12. Seattle. 44. T.” Academy of Management Journal 50. 4: 539–46. Rothengatter (2003). Morris (1994). The Standish Group (http://www. Megaprojects and Risks: An Anatomy of Ambition. Sandberg and H. NY: Harper Collins. Gulati (2007). Flyvbjerg.L. J. Daft (1983).” R.” International Journal of Project Management 24. pp.standishgroup. Management Challenges for the 21st Century. relating to management researchers and not particularly to project management researchers. a group of software developers. 293–301. Indeed. p. R. N. Its research is published under the title CHAOS. “Rethinking Project Management: Researching the Actuality of Projects. See: B. J. T.W. 10. Ghoshal (2005). 9. Authors cannot give an example to illustrate a point. UK: Cambridge University Press. A. p. 101. B. “The Need for New Paradigms for Complex has been doing surveys on all types of IT projects since 1994.” Academy of Management Learning and Education 4. C. MA: Harvard Business School Press. L. Drucker (1999).G.” International Journal of Project Management 17. London. IntroductIon • LearnIng from the Best PractItIoners 15 3. S. 217. “Learning the Craft of Organizational Research. M. New York. “Why Software Projects Escalate: The Importance of Project Management Constructs. The Management of Projects. MA: Addison-Wesley Professional. formalized. . Koskela and G. 5. Bruzelius. 8: 675–86. 1 (March): 75–91. and G. S. and W.F. focusing on complex projects. took the initiative and developed. “Tent Poles. 11. J. The Elephant and the Flea: Reflections of a Reluctant Capitalist. Rai. it becomes painfully clear that many authors have never seen or witnessed the phenomena about which they write. p. Keil. Howell (2002). WA: pp. 5 & 17. P. “Grasping the Logic of Practice: Theorizing Through Practical Rationality. 8. Williams. Tsoukas (2011). 5: 269–73. also finds a need for a new paradigm. Zhang (2003). 4: 775–782. Thomas. and implemented a new project management approach called the Agile method. Handy (2002). and Boundary Spanning: The RigorRelevance Debate in Management Research. and D. Boehm and R.E. Hodgson (2006).M. Boston. “The Underlying Theory of Project Management Is Obsolete. Cicmil.

Simultaneous Management: Managing Projects in a Dynamic Environment. Cambridge. 4: 822–29. Software Project Management: A Unified Framework. “Rethinking the Project Management Framework: New Epistemology New Insights. Boston.. 9 & 16.J. Highsmith (2000). MA: Addison-Wesley. A. A. Laufer (2009). Built to Last—Successful Habits of Visionary Companies. NY: Harper & Row. 209. 18.W. See also: K. T. Adaptive Software Development—A Collaborative Approach to Managing Complex Systems. Plans. NY: John Wiley & Sons. NY: AMACOM.. p. The Rise and Fall of Strategic Planning: Reconceiving Roles for Planning. In Search of Excellence: Lessons from America’s Best-Run Companies.” H. American Management Association. W. . Post. and E. Washington. NY: Free Press.C.16 Mastering the Leadership roLe in project ManageMent 13. W. Organizing Genius—The Secrets of Creative Collaboration.” Proceedings of PMI Research Conference. PA: Project Management Institute. Melgrati and M. New York. Leadership without Easy Answers. pp.I. Planners. 14.” Academy of Management Review 31. p. NY: Harper Collins. MA: Harvard University Press. DC: NASA. NY: Harper Collins. Waterman (1982). Biederman (1996).” Journal of Organizational Behavior 22: 31–42. Laufer and E. 371–80. we have repeatedly criticized the ‘one best way’ thinking in the management literature.J. “In Praise of Context. A. R. Management Challenges for the 21st Century. Johns (2001). NY: Dorset House Publishing. Dvir (2007). P. Reading. McKelvey (2006). J. Mintzberg discusses forms of organizations: “Throughout this book. Bennis and P. p. New York. New York. Beck (2000).A. “Van de Ven and Johnson’s Engaged Scholarship: Nice Try. Heifetz (1994). Breaking the Code of Project Management. New York.F. B. p. Damiani (2002). Boston. G. New York. T. Hoffman (2000). The “one best way” approach came under sharp attack by Henry Mintzberg as well. 172. 15.A. But. 17. Reinventing Project Management: The Diamond Approach to Successful Growth & Innovation. Project Management Success Stories: Lessons of Project Leaders. Drucker (1999). 16. 397. A.H. A. New York. Shared Voyage: Learning and Unlearning from Remarkable Projects. MA: Harvard Business School Press. NY: Palgrave Macmillan. MA: Addison-Wesley. Boston. MA: Addison-Wesley. Laufer (1996). A. Royce (1998). Shenhar and D. p. 85. Peters and R. Extreme Programming Explained: Embrace Change. Mintzberg (1994). Newtown Square. Laufer. New York. Collins and J. J. In The Rise and Fall of Strategic Planning. Hoffman (2005). New York. Porras (1994).

W.M. regarding Power Distance. and Organizations: The GLOBE Study of 62 Societies. Edward Hoffman. Regarding Human Orientation. Sorrentino and E. “The Paradigmatic and Narrative Modes in Goal-Guided Inference. the distance between the highest and the lowest scores was 2. Alexander Laufer. and the cases were completely rewritten. various researchers have reached the same conclusion that context is ever present in narrative thinking (the narrative account of an experience). Hanges. the distance between the U. Higgins (Eds. pp. Culture. the distance between the U. See: H. Javidan. Dorfman. in comparing the “one best way” approach with a story-based approach. although the distance between the highest and the lowest scores was 2. and Zvi Ziklik. and Israel was only 0. The original focus of the previous study was on project context.J. Gupta (Eds. Clandinin and F. this time with a focus on leadership and management. D.) (2004).15. regarding Uncertainty Avoidance. Thousand Oaks. IntroductIon • LearnIng from the Best PractItIoners 17 19.J. with the coauthors of the current book.S. Similarly. the original data was revisited. P. 21. Zukier (1986).S. although the distance between the highest and the lowest scores was 1.S. See: R. and Israel is quite small. additional data was collected. and Israel was only 0. R. their use should facilitate the required shift from a context-free mindset to a context-specific one. A comprehensive comparison study of culture in 62 societies found that the “cultural distance” between the U. CA: Jossey-Bass. but the distance between the U. Narrative Inquiry: Experience and Story in Qualitative Research. Leadership.T.S. NY: Guilford. and V.07. 465–502. Together.). history.05. and security. Todd Post.91. Indeed. and Israel was only 0. The data for these cases was originally collected by Dora Cohenca-Zall. M. For example. CA: Sage Thousand Oaks. San Francisco. House. culturally they seem as if they are not so far apart. M. Athough there are clear differences between the U.” Handbook of Motivation and Cognition.J.49.14. Connelly (2000). 32. p.S. and Israel in terms of size. Because stories are highly context-sensitive. 20. disregarding the issue of leadership. New York. P. .

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and I was quite content there. and Alistair Cockburn Doing Business More Like Business Air Force Program Manager Terry Little’s reputation as an innovative program manager preceded him when he was drafted to turn around a program that appeared to be on its way to swift cancellation. Dan Ward. and I wasn’t happy about it at all.’ “I knew that at JASSM. The original program manager of JASSM was put in place at the 19 . At the time. The Joint Air-to-Surface Standoff Missile (JASSM) program had been launched in April 1995 and only nine months later was already in big trouble.1 Developing a Missile: The Power of Autonomy and Learning by Alexander Laufer. I was program manager for the Joint Direct Attack Munition (JDAM) missile. “In late December 1995. ‘He wasn’t up to the task. I had started the JDAM program. I would have to start over and would probably have to cope with a more difficult environment. I got a call to come in and talk to one of my bosses at the Eglin Air Force Base. As soon as I got there. and the answer was simply. I asked about the person who I would be replacing. I was informed that I was being switched off JDAM to run the JASSM program.

Nothing more than that in the way of concrete detail. Raytheon. “’You just go down there and do your thing. Lockheed Martin. “When I was brought on.20 Mastering the Leadership roLe in project ManageMent start and given two major mandates. field their proposals. one contractor would be awarded production of the missile. meaning the TSSAM program.’ I was told as I left my boss’s office. and do the evaluation. The Tri-Service Standoff Attack Missile (TSSAM) had been cancelled after six years and several billion dollars in cost overruns. and it looked as though it was going to take the government team another year. “The second mandate was to get started quickly. the attitude down at the Office of the Secretary of Defense (OSD) was: Show that your program is serious. but they couldn’t find a way to make the source selection quickly. Too many things still needed to be done. Texas Instruments. The rest was up to me. At the end of the two-year evaluation process. focus the contractors on making a serious proposal. It was considered an unmitigated disaster. we still needed to get the formal requirements approved by OSD. and all subsequent missile programs had to establish early on that they were not going to repeat the same mistakes made by TSSAM. During the few days left . My predecessor and his team had worked on the contract since April. That was unacceptable to senior management. and show it fast—or don’t expect to be around long. The first was not to repeat any of the mistakes of the past. and McDonell Douglas. it was unlikely that money would be made available through the next fiscal year. “The immediate objective was to award contracts to two competitors that would spend the next two years developing a system under the watchful eye of the government. I guess. especially at OSD. Unless the program established quickly that it was serious about getting on contract. Still reeling from the TSSAM debacle. Five companies were interested in competing for the two contracts: Hughes.

but none of the models I was using measured that critical ingredient for success. had been brought up to believe that a sharp analytic mind can arrive at a solution for any problem. In contrast. and controlling performance.Chapter 1 • Developing a Missile: the power of autonoMy anD learning 21 until I actually joined JASSM. At first. Programs move ahead because of the activities of people. I had managed to deliver several major projects successfully by implementing practices that were designed to fit the world as I saw it and that often differed from the accepted practices. “It didn’t take me long to figure out that this idea was bankrupt. It became apparent that the JASSM team did not grasp the extent of the dissatisfaction with their achievements. I gravitated toward an analytical approach because of my background in operations research. my priorities are to develop collaborative relations. I was brought up in the Robert McNamara school of management. “Most of my peers in program management think that the most important aspects of our jobs are making decisions. It had been a bit easier to . “Experience was my greatest teacher. like me. and give the people who work for me a sense of confidence in themselves. but did they have anything to do with determining whether the project was going to be successful? Not at all. I realized that my first challenge would be to change the way in which the team perceived reality. conducting reviews. foster alliances. “I stumbled into an understanding of this when I got involved in program management many years ago. where everything is quantifiable—if we can’t build a model of something. I started collecting some information about the status of the program. I could do the fanciest calculations in the world. As in other times throughout my career. I had some difficulty convincing the people with whom I worked that it was not the right approach because they. then it doesn’t exist.

“However. had been completely different. Out of the blue. I showed up and told them. the JASSM financial manager.’” Brian Rutledge. ‘We are going to get this program on contract within six months. It meant throwing out their old paradigms and embracing a new one. He recalls that same day from the perspective of the project members: . I assembled a group of people who were change agents.22 Mastering the Leadership roLe in project ManageMent implement these practices in my previous projects because of the classified nature of the projects.” Six Is Not Seven At JASSM. I sent the whole team for a two-week training session and for industry visits to Boeing Commercial Aviation. Apple Computers. The main qualities required were the ability to think differently and the energy and zest to do something different. It was a high-profile Defense Acquisition Pilot Project. In order to do business differently. was already familiar with Terry’s no-nonsense approach when he took over JASSM. which was part of a wide reform movement in the defense establishment. JDAM. They were in a state of disbelief after learning that their boss had been fired over the Christmas holidays. as they had worked together on a previous project. primarily to reinforce the fact that acquisition reform was not just a buzzword. If we don’t do it in six months. my most recent project. Terry intended to apply the same principle that business would no longer be done as usual: “I called a meeting the first day back after New Year’s with the 20 people who were working on JASSM. This pilot program was given a clear mandate: Do business more like business. and Florida Power and Light. Motorola. He had worked with them on this program from the beginning and was well liked. there is no program.

and anybody who’s not on board with that might as well look for another job. perhaps unfairly. The SAMP is the document that lays out how a program will be managed. basically. He didn’t let me down. It’s a project plan. as a group. but Terry scheduled a mandatory meeting and required that everyone show up. First you need to put aside all of your paradigms and start with one basic assumption: that it’s going to be done in six months. It was January 3. He came into the room where we had assembled and. so that it parts like the Red Sea parted for Moses— that’s my job. to do whatever’s necessary to make the bureaucracy move out of our way. to rise to the challenge. and you haven’t even started. literally stopped them in their tracks. the project’s systems engineer (and Brian’s wife after the first two years of the project). impossible as it may have seemed at the time: “After some initial cries of resistance—‘there’s no way. I told them.” Terry’s objective was to empower the team. and it seems as though everybody in the OSD needs . describes those early days when she had only known Terry for about a month: “We had done a draft of the Single Acquisition Management Plan (SAMP) in the fall of 1995. of not hesitating to fire people when he thought it necessary. He had a reputation. you really don’t get it’—they realized that I was counting on them.’ He scared a lot of people. ‘We’re going to be on contract by July. and a lot of people were still on Christmas and New Year’s leave. before even introducing himself. so I was half expecting something dramatic on his first day. is to facilitate things.Chapter 1 • Developing a Missile: the power of autonoMy anD learning 23 “I knew some of his antics. But here you are giving up. as the leader here.’ That silenced them. said. My job.” Lynda Rutledge. ‘We have to figure out how to work together to make this happen. Some people weren’t sure they would still be in the JASSM program office by the end of the month.

One thing about Terry Little is that he knows when to pick his battles. Terry didn’t want a lot of detail. they farm it out to their leads who have no idea how their piece will be integrated into the whole. occasionally popping out of his office and showing up at peoples’ desks. He didn’t believe that you need to. He was not going to fall on his sword over a handful of paper. where Terry had the luxury of selecting his own team and sufficient time to ensure that everyone on board understood and embraced the principles of the reform. unified plan. Normally. Terry didn’t shut anyone out and in fact sought input from people. in his previous project. This impressed me more than anything else about him. Terry read what we had written before he arrived and deemed it ‘a piece of junk. but ultimately decided to give in. he had served only as the project integrator. But when the document came back from the OSD. or for that matter even can. “As I later learned. JDAM. He pushed back on OSD. the project had already formed working groups for each critical . I’d never seen.’ I remember him closing his office door and disappearing for about five days to rewrite it. which was before Terry’s arrival. to ask questions. spell out every detail about a program at its start. a program manager writing his own SAMP. “Terry wanted to present a concise. while the plan was actually prepared by the team.24 Mastering the Leadership roLe in project ManageMent to sign off on it. This time around. Terry had to adapt his approach to the new conditions under which JASSM was forced to operate: a shortage of time and a team unfamiliar with the reform. and in the end it’s going to be a Pyrrhic victory at best if it distracts you from the main task at hand— getting on contract. or even heard of. you can’t do anything more than push and push against the system. I think that he rewrote 90 percent of our original draft and cut it down by more than half. “When I joined JASSM. it had grown bigger than he’d wanted. like mine. Still. In a case like this.

and other times. they punish you. My notion about successful working groups was that they should be small. they don’t. People who . even at the expense of the other team members. So when the contractors went back to the program director and complained about me. he said that he was shocked by my behavior. so I told the contractors that from now on. I can’t tell you what a big relief it was after starting to work with Terry that I could finally make decisions without having to worry anymore about being overruled every time one of the companies complained. There are program decisions being made every day without my prior approval. Meetings in my area were conducted with the purpose of reaching some consensus on the models. I was surprised to find close to a hundred people in the room. he’s not afraid to fail. the companies had managed to get what they wanted from the original project manager by whining. Not Terry. but when something goes wrong. he tried to appease them. Terry’s management philosophy is based on autonomy and trust: “When it comes to making decisions on the technical aspects of a program. In the first meeting for my area. measuring weapon effectiveness to be used by the five companies competing for the contract award. Every time they complained. A lot of bosses talk the talk about letting you take risks. When someone is new and I haven’t taken the full measure of them yet. “Now you have to understand that up until that time. I believe in giving them the freedom they need to do their job. I intended to limit the number of people who could attend the meetings. I will ask him or her to let me know what’s going on. Sometimes people let me know what was decided. I seldom intervene or get involved in the details.” Indeed.Chapter 1 • Developing a Missile: the power of autonoMy anD learning 25 project area. and that’s why he takes chances. what they’ve decided— but after I am comfortable with their judgment.

26 Mastering the Leadership roLe in project ManageMent want to work for me are the kind of people who are not afraid to be accountable for results. I had to go in and defend my estimates to him. ‘I give up. when I brought something to him. we were driving together and got involved in a car accident. Late one night. ‘You are going to bankrupt the program. As we were waiting on the side of the road for the police to come. my predecessor finally said.” Regarding commitment and trust. He was in charge of security on the program. he’ll tear you apart. ‘We are going to have all the security we could possibly need. Brian Rutledge explains: “Terry expects you to defend your position. About a year later. I had a conversation with a colleague who had a tremendous impact on how I manage and why I place so much importance on establishing goals for the project and ensuring that each member fully embraces them. Terry had challenged him on his cost estimate—Why did you do this? Why did you do that? After several rounds of this. We went head to head and he challenged me on every little thing. ‘What do you want?’ So after three months. is to have a high expectation for results. I got promoted. but I stood my ground. but there . In the first project we worked on together.” Mutual accountability and a sense of project ownership are essential to Terry: “Earlier in my career. If you can’t defend it. Neither of us was hurt. what number do you want?’ But that’s not what Terry wanted to hear. You don’t ever say to Terry. The reason he got fired was because he couldn’t figure out Terry’s personality. From then on. I think that the key to getting the most out of people. but he could have been any functional type person.’ I said. I was joking with him about all the things that he was insisting I do in his area. I replaced a major who was just fired by Terry. but the car was wrecked and we had to call for help. whether they are on the government side or the contractor side. and that trust grew. he trusted me.

” .” Jackie Leitzel. I only care about my own sandbox.’ ‘That would suit me just fine. That was an enlightening experience for me. and he was serious. At one of the first meetings after Terry came on board. ‘I really don’t care about the program. so I understood what he was saying about the problem of people having different goals. in effect. I had assumed that everyone I was working with looked at things from the perspective of what was good for the program overall. Terry got us focused fast with the same goal to get on contract in six months. Security is my job. Suddenly we knew what we were aiming for. It was my job alone to care about what was good for the program as a whole. would integrate all of these different narrow vertical goals.’ he told me. That’s your job. Before he came. and I would have to go to the program director to ask which version we were going with—and even then I still didn’t get a clear-cut answer. Air Force. the contracting officer for the U. it’s not what I get measured against. we were just spinning our wheels. recalls: “Before Terry arrived.S. that they wanted the whole program to be successful.Chapter 1 • Developing a Missile: the power of autonoMy anD learning 27 won’t be a program anymore. and that their own special area was secondary. I remember it being such a shock to me that he would say.’ “Looking back on this. ‘The rest of the program is not my job. Their expectation was that I.’ His comment led me to start questioning some of the people with whom I worked. Logistics might be saying one thing while Testing was saying another. and it’s why I believe that it is so critical to make absolutely sure everyone has a clear understanding of what we are trying to do and feels ownership for the goals of the entire project. “What I found out was that he was not unique—virtually none of the people who worked with me had the same goal that I did. he showed us several charts about teaming and shared goals. as the project leader.

28 Mastering the Leadership roLe in project ManageMent Not only did Terry get everyone to agree on the same goal. and what are the implications?’ “For example. but as they saw that I wasn’t just doing this for my health or because it was polite. they began to approach these meetings much more seriously. but it’s going to take a really long time to go through all of the engineering details. and then modify it if we need to. After these group meetings. If we could just start off putting it on one or two planes and get this thing built and fielded. Tell me specifically about this requirement. “From my point of view. but to listen to what they had to say. where we were having problems in the program office. ‘Give me some feedback. A couple of the companies said. they were all guarded and careful about what they disclosed. I would meet with each of the five contractors separately—not to tell them something. where the requirements stood. and overall performance. what had changed since the last time we spoke. Nobody wanted to give away their competitive edge or reveal any weaknesses. When they were with the four other competitors.’ . I would ask. we suggested a requirement to put this weapon on a number of different kinds of airplanes. and what approvals we still needed to get from my upper management. he encouraged their input on how best to reach it: “I held weekly meetings with representatives from each of the five companies competing for the contract in order to give them an update on where we stood. and we can do that. They started out reserved in the oneon-one meetings. I was trying to learn—as opposed to just trying to squeeze information out of them. ‘We’ve looked at that. we would be much better off in terms of overall cost. Does the path we’re headed down seem right to you? Is there a requirement—or two or three or four—which you think is not going to be consistent with us getting a low-cost system? What I want to know is: Are we spinning our wheels in some area that we don’t really understand. overall schedule.

I wanted the five companies who were going to bid to be involved in the process of refining the requirements. it is much easier and much better to carefully think about requirements before they are formulated. and now it is up to you to go and respond. So I allow. which is extremely difficult to change. Its view was that once you decide on your requirements. then you call in the contractor and say. ‘Here is exactly what we are going to do. the government frowned upon doing things that way at this stage of a program. “The fact of the matter is that most requirements are just made up by someone. we’ve got it all figured out. a requirement starts off as somebody’s opinion or view of what would be good. Once I am convinced that we have taken the necessary steps to formulate requirements that meet the needs . it didn’t seem to me to be in their best interest—or ours—to say. and even encourage. Once a requirement is established and everyone has signed on to it. As such. this is what we’re going to do. Because they were the ones who had to respond to whatever innovations we pitched. Typically. it doesn’t matter because the requirement is the requirement. but what often happens is that everybody then begins to march as if it’s a law of nature that you’ve got to meet this requirement. and you companies are going to learn how to adjust. the requirement becomes an expectation.’ I thought that the best way to improve our chances of getting a quality product was to allow for some give-and-take at this stage. ‘Okay. “One of the major reasons for schedule slippages and cost overruns is uncontrolled growth in requirements. when our vision for the missile was still in flux. flexibility regarding requirements. but only up to a certain point.’ But I didn’t believe that was the way to get the most bang for the buck. rather than after they appear to be cast in stone. The prevailing assumption is that however much time and however much money it takes.Chapter 1 • Developing a Missile: the power of autonoMy anD learning 29 “By and large.

Ideally. ‘Okay. now can we sell it? Is there a market for something that costs this much?’ It’s a question of establishing the affordable price for a system and then trading off either performance or schedule to meet that price as long as the Key Performance Parameters are met. You have to do that to make sure the engineers understand that the success or failure of their activity depends on what the ultimate cost is. It is quite amazing to see how a process that simply establishes accountability for requirements growth promotes better discipline and yields a more realistic schedule and budget. Basically. “We ran into this problem with ‘radar cross section. The thing about engineers is that they generally do not accept ownership of cost and schedule.’ then after it is designed ask. and to treat it as something different is crazy. They accept ownership of performance. I say there will be no changes in requirements until the customers understand the cost and schedule implications of the change and explicitly agree to those implications.30 Mastering the Leadership roLe in project ManageMent of the customers and which are fully understood by them.” Throughout the entire process. The trick is to define performance in a way that permits the team to meet the requirements of the system within the constraints of affordability. but cost and schedule are somebody else’s problem. I have found it useful—and this doesn’t come easy to me—to create a very bureaucratic process for changing requirements. you would want it to be . Terry stressed to his team that part of a technical requirement has to be cost: “Cost is a technical issue.’ which is a critical performance parameter that has to do with how visible the cruise missile is on radar. Imagine a car manufacturer telling its engineers. “Our aim was to demonstrate that we could produce this missile for low cost. What I did was make cost an intrinsic part of the technical requirements for designing the missile. ‘Go and design the next generation whatever-kind-of-car.

What I did was invite one of his deputies to work directly with my cost team. ‘We don’t need to be any better than the predecessor program. Then there were the cost people saying. “To invite him in was a risk because I couldn’t control what he was going to see. he would feel accountable for the product. Let’s stay on ground that we know will not collapse beneath us. it turned out to be a good match of cost and performance. My hope was that by making him a member of our team. and they are there to challenge your assumptions. In the end. The way I saw it. The head cop at the CAIG was the one who had to sign off on the program. what I decided was somewhere in between the engineers and the cost people. You can spend infinite amounts of money on this. The engineers whined that I wasn’t being ambitious or aggressive enough. but I had worked on other programs before JASSM. the question was: How much better should we go? We had engineers who were very eager to go four or five orders of magnitude better on this parameter. while the bean counters whined about the risk. We don’t want to reach for something and spend a lot of money and then not make it. so you have to decide what you are willing to accept and can still afford. and he was known for grilling people hard about how they put together their cost estimates.Chapter 1 • Developing a Missile: the power of autonoMy anD learning 31 totally invisible. ‘I don’t understand . Brian knew that the program could not move forward without the approval of the Cost Analysis Improvement Group (CAIG): “They’re the cops of the cost world.” As the financial manager. rather than an adversary with whom we had to struggle to get the program going. and I knew that the worst thing you could have happen was for someone on the CAIG to say.’ Ultimately. I had him interfacing with all of our engineers and anybody we were working with to help build the cost estimates. Nobody was really happy.

went to his boss and said. I suspect that . “I had one person helping me to crunch numbers. Three weeks to review the proposals and choose the two companies who would compete for the next two years. he knew that our data was good because we shared all of it with him. even if it sometimes meant a willingness to deviate from the norm: “Our plan called for completing the source selection in three weeks. and then breathe. He. He was definitely high maintenance. in turn. ‘They have credible numbers. Each time he lit up. the source selection was done before he could mobilize the bureaucracy against us. We’d be the only ones in the building at 11:00 at night and he’d be smoking like a fiend. but I knew he would get the job done. so I kept him focused on which way to go. ‘You’re not leaving! Open the window and smoke. I said. he had to leave the office and go outside the building. In fact. Finally. ‘We’re going to throw you out of here if you keep this up. The room reeked of cigarettes. he wasn’t in high demand. but we got the job done.’ The person who managed the building complained. Three weeks.’ Even though he was doing an independent estimate in parallel. and we worked insane hours during those three weeks.32 Mastering the Leadership roLe in project ManageMent all your data or where your numbers are coming from. those two things can overcome just about anything. I’ll take the heat for it. He loved the intensity. When I recruited him.’ Fortunately.’” Brian knew that getting the job done required the ability to adapt to the situation. but he was intelligent and had a passion for what he did. The only thing that slowed us down was his chain smoking. “Other people would never have considered recruiting this guy for their team. If you ask me. a lot of people around Eglin Air Force Base thought he was off the wall—and he was. “All he needed was a little direction.

‘But technically she’s good. The program was a roller coaster ride as it was. It’s just not worth the technical benefit she brings to the program.’ I said.” As Lynda Rutledge discovered. and I took him to task for it once.’ he explained.Chapter 1 • Developing a Missile: the power of autonoMy anD learning 33 he never enjoyed himself as much as he did those three weeks during source selection.’ I said. much to his chagrin. That’s when I told him. “Then he asked me what I would do. and it was bad for morale when someone whom you relied on to make decisions was disappearing for long stretches and holding people back. I think. and the problem didn’t go away either.’ I said it wasn’t worth sacrificing the morale of the rest of the team to keep her on. I just like to give women more latitude. but he didn’t get rid of her. ‘You’re a male chauvinist.’ he said.’ He listened to me. ‘When she’s here. A woman in a leadership position on our team was vanishing for long periods without any explanation. ‘I’d get rid of her. if I thought her absence was having a negative effect on the program. I told him that I thought it was. “’We don’t want to be treated differently.’ I pointed out. One day Terry asked me. So I told him. sometimes keeping the right people in the right job at the right time is a hard call to make: “Terry gives women more latitude than he does men. You have to get the right people for the right job at the right time. “’Well. ‘What kind of example does that set for junior people when they see somebody senior behaving that way? Is that the example you want to set for future leaders? It’s unacceptable. as he continued to compensate for her absences. because he knew I had the most contact with her.” . ‘What do you mean?’ he asked.’ I could tell he was mortified. ‘You treat women differently than men. He still wasn’t getting it.

When all was said and done. I mean. Considering that the selection was to be equally based on their past performances and their current proposals. . Let’s face it. and then go read the thing in our hole and say. that defeated the whole purpose of doing an oral presentation because we missed out on the dialogue.000-page proposal down to what could be adequately addressed in a four-hour oral presentation. and to do that sight unseen. a contract is like a marriage. Unfortunately.’ “Personally. what their strengths are. I just think that a decision worth billions of dollars should not rely on a piece of paper. Lynda and Terry were in complete harmony about the need to change the usual way of doing source selection and the need to cut down the enormous amount of information requested by the government team. get an all-encompassing document back. Terry fought to have the companies do oral presentations instead of simply turning in a written proposal. hand it over to contractors. though. In the end.34 Mastering the Leadership roLe in project ManageMent When it came to devising the process for selecting the two contractors. I think it’s absurd to choose a contractor without talking to them and finding out who they are. and the companies argued that scheduling the presentations on different days meant that some of them would have more time to prepare than others.” Although they did get their oral presentations. Lynda tells how the process was not without its problems: “Upper management worried about our ability to evaluate live performances. and how you’re going to team with them. They think we should write an all-encompassing Request for Proposal. ‘We pick you. Lynda describes the need for less paper and more personal interaction: “Many people in the government don’t want to talk to contractors prior to source selection. we had managed to cut a 1. the compromise was to have them all turn in videotaped presentations at the same time.

“When we got the final presentation tapes. this is goofy. I know what we’re doing. Brian Rutledge recalls a small gesture that took on far greater meaning than he ever thought it would: “After Terry said that we were going to be on contract in six months. which were face-to-face with government evaluators. I’ve never heard this before. the companies’ engineers. and most of us who were doing the evaluations turned off the tapes and did our evaluations based on the slides. ‘Hey. ‘Oh man. I thought. In other cases. ‘Well. I don’t understand what you’re talking about. bless their hearts.’ And then they would respond back.’ . There was plenty of dialogue then. I just rolled my eyes.. They got nervous after the dry runs. I wasn’t the only person who considered the videotaped presentations a waste of time. he directed someone to make a viewgraph stating this goal: Be on contract by July 1. gave acting a shot. We raised hands. 1996.. and cut in. At first.Chapter 1 • Developing a Missile: the power of autonoMy anD learning 35 “Nobody was more anxious about the oral presentations than the companies who were doing them.” Terry had his way of making sure everyone stayed on message. ‘What’s this guy thinking?’ I said.’ That was invaluable. That was it. The companies all submitted written slides to accompany their presentations. some of the contractors had hired professional actors to narrate. I don’t need to have a reminder on the wall. ‘It’s like we’re in kindergarten.’ When I talked to other people working in the program office. asked questions. We had the ability to say to our counterparts on the contractor side. the reason we are doing it this way is. I don’t get what you’re saying. They worried that their engineers weren’t going to be effective presenters or go off on a tangent and never get back to the point. He wanted it pinned up in everybody’s cubicle. and that’s what you really need to do in order to evaluate and understand somebody’s proposal.

and what can I cut out of my work that’s preventing me from getting there? How am I getting distracted from the goal?’” An unexpected admission by Terry revealed the essence of his philosophy: “The truth is that I pulled the number six out of my hat. or can it be seven?’ ‘No.’ I said. ‘What am I doing to get to that point. ‘because the difference between six months and seven months is that seven months isn’t the goal. and to ask themselves with a clean slate: ‘What do I really need to do to achieve this goal?’ “As they ran into hard times. ‘Hey. there . but does it really have to be six months. I would have been happy to be on contract at the end of seven months or even eight months. I saw it there every day when I walked up to my desk. all the things that were in their heads as a result of their experiences and what they had been told in the past. I eventually found myself stopping to think. they wanted to negotiate. ‘How should we make the right decision?’ Now. There were a lot of people saying. I didn’t want a schedule that they felt they could achieve just by working on weekends or figuring out a handful of inventive ways to do things. I had to admit that there was something to it. “What I wanted to do was set a goal that would challenge these folks to look at things in an entirely new way.36 Mastering the Leadership roLe in project ManageMent “But after a few months. all their beliefs. first. People no longer scratched their heads and asked one another. we’ve figured out ways to work faster. but then—once they figured out that giving up wasn’t an option—to step back and examine all their assumptions. I wanted something so outrageous that it would cause them. to essentially give up. but I would never have told the team that.’ “The result was that problems didn’t remain unsolved for long.

that event. and making sure that they didn’t make any mistakes. another three days?’ “We kept a chart to measure our progress. People would look at that and say. Forget about chronology. Some days we put our progress at 70 percent. and with good cause. People were proud of themselves.Chapter 1 • Developing a Missile: the power of autonoMy anD learning 37 was a level of commitment that meant any problem had to be attacked with a sledgehammer. no matter whose area it was in. The team addressed all problems. everybody marshaled their energies together to try to figure out quickly. it wasn’t a chart to mark off this event. having run into some kind of unanticipated problem. our mark would go back down to 60 percent. They wouldn’t let any given problem cause the rest of the team to fail. it was a chart that graphed how much we had accomplished and how much we had left to do. ‘What is it that we’ve got in front of us to do. making good decisions. When a problem was detected. commitment. At the end of the day. and focus. ‘Okay. another two days. they were so imbued with energy and passion for achieving the goal that instead of saying.” . and the next week.’ they kept working on it every day to figure out. now let’s coast. ‘How do we move forward? How do we either solve the problem or get around it?’ “Even after they got to the point where it became fairly certain that they were going to meet the six-month deadline. following the rules. as opposed to being smart. But. ‘Oh no. we’ve got to step it up!’ “What we achieved was something even better than six months. and is there a quicker way to accomplish it? How can we cut another day. They achieved what they did as a result of passion. what the team discovered was that they hadn’t known how capable they could be if they just quit thinking about things in the way they had always thought about them. we completed the source selection in less than five months. and so on. When we talked about it afterwards.

” Brian Rutledge explains the process further: “What was unique about JASSM was that we let the companies decide what they were going to do during the two years. C. D. which started in June 1996 at the end of the six-month source selection process: “The two defense contractors finally chosen to compete in the Program Definition and Risk Reduction phase were Lockheed Martin Integrated Systems and McDonnell Douglas Aerospace. brought the best experts. we gave them the opportunity to tailor what it was they were going to do over the next two years. Because they were at different stages of maturity.400 JASSMs. testing. the government conducted a two-day review of the design of each company. B.38 Mastering the Leadership roLe in project ManageMent We Would Shoot Granny for a Dollar Jackie Leitzel describes the Program Definition and Risk Reduction phase of the JASSM. the Department of Defense will award one of the contractors approximately $3 billion for the development. I switched from being the financial lead in the government program office to being program manager on a helper team for McDonnell Douglas. At the end of this phase. However. Each of the companies was awarded contracts totaling $237. we didn’t present to them a Statement of Work and say you have to do A. and production of at least 2. Every six months. “When we down-selected from five companies to two. and provided candid feedback. and E.4 million and will go head-to-head over the next two years to win the final contract. we would judge them on that and pick the one we believed was best able to carry us on through the rest of the program. At the end of the two years. The role of a helper team was to assist your company in winning the contract at the end of the two . We let the competition give us the assurance that we were going to get good value for the money.

Chapter 1 • Developing a Missile: the power of autonoMy anD learning


years. When we began, six government people were assigned to each of the helper teams. We all came from the JASSM program office at Eglin Air Force Base. Winning was the goal. Forget about the old goal of getting on contract in six months. We had a new goal. “I stayed in that position for the duration of the competition, and about halfway into it, McDonnell Douglas merged with Boeing. Our program office was then absorbed into the Boeing organization, and I started splitting my time between Eglin in Florida and the company’s main facility in St. Louis. Soon after we moved into our offices in St. Louis, Terry asked the vice president at McDonnell Douglas/Boeing in charge of JASSM whether he wanted to reconsider having government helpers. ‘Oh no, I want to continue this,’ he said, ‘these people are integral in helping us make decisions.’ And we were. He often asked for my advice on how we should present this or that problem to the government team back home. When I was with the government team, my job was to show why my company earned an “A” grade on the evaluation criteria. At this point, you could say I might as well have been wearing a company uniform. Winning was everything. Naturally, I couldn’t do anything illegal, but all else was fair game. I’ll say this, it was the best job I ever had working for the government in terms of having a clear direction.” Terry describes his role in the competition: “I picked the helpers. Their job was to support their respective company—not to look after the government’s interest, not to make sure the company didn’t do something stupid, not to bring home secrets to me—just to help that company win, period. And the reason that was in the government’s interest was because at the end of the two years, we wanted to face a difficult decision when we selected the winning company.


Mastering the Leadership roLe in project ManageMent

“The government’s role should be to ensure the success of the project, and the way to do that is not to oversee or second-guess the contractor—the way to do that is by helping the contractor. Help the contractor to do things that the contractor can’t do or that the government can do better. The helper teams set the stage for what I wanted the government’s role to be two years later when we got down to one contractor. When we finally got down to the one company that was going to do the job, I wanted to have already established a working relationship in which we were open, straight, candid, and—most of all—trusting of one another. I clearly understood that you can’t do that by just saying it is so. It just doesn’t work that way. “Now, there were a lot of people above me who were against this. Their view was, ‘The guy who loses will protest or create a legal problem for us because he will argue that you gave him weak people or that his competitive position got inadvertently disclosed by these government people.’ But the companies had the capabilities to get rid of any government person they chose at any time for any reason. In other words, the companies were the ones deciding what ‘help’ was and whether or not they were getting it. If they had thought that they needed someone else with a different talent or expertise, I would have done whatever I could to get it for them.” Larry Lawson, the project manager for Lockheed Martin Corporation, reflects on the need to stop doing “business as usual:” “Before acquisition reform, the government said to its contractors, ‘Follow these military standards and everything will be okay.’ From a contractor’s point of view, that was a comfortable place to be. Contractors understood the ‘old way’ of business, where we knew what the government wanted. There was more time, less risk, and more money.

Chapter 1 • Developing a Missile: the power of autonoMy anD learning


“Then came along Terry Little, who was quick to say, ‘We don’t have the time, we don’t have the funds, and we don’t have the answers. We want a missile in half the time for half the price. This is what’s important to us. We have three key performance parameters: system effectiveness, range, and carrier operability. These things are not tradable; everything else is. You will have the freedom to put together your approach that meets our three key performance parameters, and along with that, we will ask for a long-term, bumper-to-bumper warranty to back up the quality of your approach. The objective is a dramatic reduction in acquisition time and funds. You either understand that or you are out of the game.’ “Terry took a very aggressive approach on standards and detailed specifications. He told me, ‘Larry, throw all the military standards out. You don’t have to follow them. I don’t want you to reference a single military standard.’ This was an extreme approach intended to force change—the type of change that was required if we were going to make unprecedented inroads in cutting the time required to field weapons. Suddenly we found ourselves in an environment where our customer was saying, ‘If you want to win, you can’t do things the old way. Here’s the way it is now. We did the last down-select 50 percent on past performance. Now the rules are different. Affordability is going to be foremost. The contractor who can provide the best price—and is somebody that we can work with—is going to win.’ “That was a wake-up call to me. I remember realizing that we were going down the wrong road. We were moving ahead with a performance-oriented agenda. We had to change what we were doing and drive everything toward affordability, and we did. One of our engineers was quoted a few months later as saying, ‘We would shoot granny for a dollar.’


Mastering the Leadership roLe in project ManageMent

“Of course, change is seldom comfortable. We were in a purely experimental space, which is a disconcerting place to be at times. We moved forward with the vision to create a significantly different model for the missile design, system test, subcontracting, and production, but change was slower to happen in some areas. As a contractor, it is sometimes frustrating when you are going down an acquisition reform path only to find out that it isn’t possible. Looking to place blame for the cost and schedule impacts could have split our team, but we took our lumps and moved on. “We were not known as a cruise missile producer, so most of our team wasn’t burdened with preconceptions of how to proceed. Using the customer’s overarching vision, we opened our eyes to all possible methods, which allowed us to synthesize the design that stands today. The folks that couldn’t get the vision moved on. Those who remained understood the Air Force vision, and we shaped our own. “We recognized that we had to dramatically reduce cost while still keeping the performance bar high. A fully integrated systems design approach to meet performance at the defined cost targets was our only hope of obtaining a reliable and affordable solution. For instance, it was understood that cruise missiles were built in sections and then integrated in final assembly. That approach wasn’t affordable and didn’t contribute in any way to performance. We decided on a uni-body approach, which would reduce material cost and assembly labor, and we were not going to build the missile fuselage out of metal. We said, ‘We’re going to build it out of composites, and we’re going to use boating industry processes.’ “Acquisition reform forced us to take a whole new look at the way we did things. We outsourced work any time we realized that we could do something more affordably with suppliers. I won’t deny that there were conflicts within the organization,

Chapter 1 • Developing a Missile: the power of autonoMy anD learning


but we were able to convince people that this was what it took to win—taking a risk and not surrendering to political pressure. “For example, we normally would have built the composites at our legendary Skunk Works facility in Palmdale, California. Now, because affordability meant everything, we went with a supplier instead. It would have been lower risk and superior quality to do it at Palmdale, but it was going to cost us more money. “We found a company outside of Boston that had been in the business of making baseball bats and golf club shafts. They had never built a military product, but they knew how to weave carbon fiber and were open-minded, and we were committed to making them successful. So we took this small company from being a baseball bat provider to being a cruise missile supplier, and it was a remarkable transformation. “The first prototype they built took a long time, and the end product didn’t measure up. When they built the second one, they had learned what things they didn’t have to do or be concerned about, and so the second prototype was a better product that took about half as long to build. By the time they started work on the sixth one, they knew exactly where they had to be concerned with the strength of this thing as they were putting it together and they knew exactly where they could reduce their cost. “I have to give the credit to the folks at Palmdale. In spite of the fact that they were going to lose the work, they found the Boston company for us. They also helped find a supplier for our missile wings. One of the fellows at Palmdale knew about a company that built surfboards. He said, ‘Hey, look, I think this wing is the same kind of thing that they do with surf boards.’ We went down to their factory in a disadvantaged section of Los Angeles and bought the equipment for them. Now they make cruise missile wings using surfboard technology.

Terry visited one of the contractors’ suppliers and asked him. except for inspectors. and I think he accepted this. ‘What are you going to do with that?’ And I said. and talking to them about the program and how important their contributions were—that was a big deal to him. Success was realized by creative. A government program manager does not normally go to visit the suppliers of a prime contractor. so when I showed up at their facility. meeting his people. they understood that it was because I wanted to know about what they were doing. I was there. “What is the prime making you do or causing you to do that you think is worthless or not value-added enough to offset the cost?” As he tells it: “A representative from the prime was present. The fact that I was there and willing to spend a whole day looking at his facility. for one thing. “Typically. ‘Our contract is with the prime. and he knew that. I told the representative from the prime to go get a cup of coffee. “As I was writing all this down. ‘Not to worry. even though we at Lockheed Martin faced the challenge of not having a platform to start with. highly motivated people who were not locked into accepted solutions or preconceptions defined by military standards.’ . How did I gain his trust? “Well. I ended up with about three pages full of stuff that the supplier said was causing him headaches. he asked. and we don’t have a contract with these suppliers. I couldn’t do a thing. we were in a better position of being responsive to the government’s objectives. but I knew that he wouldn’t have told me any of this stuff about the prime if he hadn’t believed me. and so there was a little bit of nervousness on the part of the supplier. Legally. A lot of these people never see any government people.” In that same competitive spirit.’ I made it clear to him that I was going to protect him. the government says.44 Mastering the Leadership roLe in project ManageMent “From my perspective.

’ or ‘I’m not very interested in any of them’—to me that seems insane. they had to work to convince the government that they had gotten the price of this missile down. “I understand that I can’t go to these suppliers and start making demands. go to them and say.’ A week later. Brian tells us: “At this stage of the game. ‘Well. it is true that we can’t be in there undermining the relationship between the prime and the suppliers. I believe it’s important to communicate with everybody involved in the outcome of a program. ‘Tell me what I can do to help you do your job better. This was no secret. That was fine. . because I don’t have an official means. and there are all kinds of smaller companies that provide the engine. as the government program manager. and so on. the fuses.’ “I gave the three pages to the prime without any explanation other than.Chapter 1 • Developing a Missile: the power of autonoMy anD learning 45 Maybe that’s true. ‘This is what he told me. Am I just going to close my eyes to that? We have two big companies putting together a cruise missile. A large part of the success of the program depends on what the suppliers to my contractor are doing. the affordability of the missile was rated higher than its technical capability. In everything the companies were doing in this phase. the government would select a contractor who promised technical competency at a good price. but it doesn’t mean that I can’t. an actual legal relationship with them. do this. this guy from the prime came back to me and explained how they’d addressed everything on the list except for one thing. I had no problem with that. the warhead. do that. Yes. that’s not my problem. and he gave me a detailed and satisfactory explanation as to why the one thing was still important to do. At the end of the two years. but think about this in terms of common sense. theoretically. But for me to just say.” On the need to be aggressive in cutting costs.

There was no doubt that . and this was something that frustrated me throughout the process. instead of listening to us and looking at what they were doing. we would have liked for it to have been a difficult decision. who is very hungry and wants to get into the cruise missile business. I told them where I thought they should be in terms of a production price at the end to win the contract. In the end. the DOD chose Lockheed Martin Corporation. they used disciplined processes. and I tried to get them to change. they saw it as an opportunity to adapt. but when they got feedback from the government. They had good engineers. They had the resources to be very aggressive in pricing the missile.46 Mastering the Leadership roLe in project ManageMent “As one of the Boeing helpers. ‘That’s not good enough to keep out the other guy. and after their reviews would go back and decide.” Terry recalls: “When it came to choosing which company would be awarded the contract.’ I could not convince them that they had to be more aggressive in their production pricing. ‘What is it that we need to change? Where is it that we need to put more emphasis? Where is it that we need to get rid of people? Where is it that we need to spend more money?’ Every time they got feedback.’ It was as though they had their plan and nothing was going to cause them to deviate from that. “The other company listened to our feedback. The one that lost didn’t do a bad job. they argued—’But you just don’t understand. Historically. and I think they did not take the stance of being aggressive enough on their pricing. However. I kept arguing. they’d been the cruise missile contractors. One company was clearly the stronger of the two. We need to find some other ways to get this price down lower than he is willing to go. it was not a difficult choice.

Chapter 1 • Developing a Missile: the power of autonoMy anD learning 47 by the time we got to the last review. but eventually you reach your goal. it saves you money. but by then it was too late. Somebody should have asked. “Prototyping is a wonderful way of learning. The reason people want it to be that way is because prototyping is not cheap—it is not cheap in terms of the money or the time required to do it. we can run through the numbers. “The company that lost also had another big problem. and prototyping was an essential part of their strategy. but then you learn from that.” We’re Married Now Lockheed’s Larry Lawson discusses the change in the way his team had to interact with the government team after winning the contract: “Soon after we won the contract to be the sole source provider on JASSM. it rarely happens the way we predict with our models. Their suppliers complained that the prime was unwilling to give them the money to build prototypes. yet we don’t do enough of it because we would like to believe that if we simply get enough smart people together. do the simulation. Terry and I realized that the majority of his people . Eventually they overcame it. most of the time it won’t. But guess what? In the real world. In the long run. put them in the model. and it will all come out just like it is supposed to. The company that won was not afraid to learn from its mistakes. ‘How do we convince ourselves that we know how to build this in an affordable way?’ You do prototyping up front and then see if something works like you think it will. It is messy and sometimes you are embarrassed with the results. everybody knew who was going to win. Sometimes it will.

‘Let me be clear. we’re married now. this led to an offsite with the whole team. “The first thing I did was bring several of the government folks into our facility. Terry got up to speak and said. Their job up to this point had been to measure us and to critique us so that they could do a source selection. his people could not be in the critique mode any longer. our first missile launch after the contract award failed. People got to know one another and realized that they weren’t slimy contractors or inconsiderate government employees. Invariably. I invited them to all of our meetings. all responsible for the success of the program. and I also made Terry’s deputy my number two person. “Whenever Terry or I felt like his people were reverting to their traditional role of overseeing the contractor. some of our innovative designs were unproven other than through extensive subsystem testing and detailed modeling. we met with the key individuals involved to talk about it. And they were invaluable in other ways. Divorce would be devastating. “After months of working seven-day weeks. Our first launch! This worried me because up until that point.48 Mastering the Leadership roLe in project ManageMent needed to become helpers—not just the handful who worked with us during the rolling down-select. He moved his office into our facility and sat across the hall from me. We must work together—so don’t come to me with a bunch of domestic squabbles. the answer was yes. For the program to continue moving ahead. Everything before flight testing . Were they all motivated to make this program successful? Almost universally. At our first offsite after the contract award.’ “Our offsites were crucial in maintaining the focus and reinforcing the message that we were all working together as a team. We had to all play as a team now. These were real people with real commitments to what they were working on.

Terry’s reaction. “Teams are defined by how they react in adversity—and how their leaders react. and the team was shaken. The status quo response would have been. At that moment. The problem was associated with some test-related analog circuitry requested by the safety team. ‘I’m going to let you solve this problem. We don’t trust you. and we turned the failure into a challenge to correct the problem by the next scheduled shot date.’ But that’s not what he said. I asked him to send down three or four people from his test organization who had expertise in specific areas. we all questioned ourselves. I think. Terry did the right thing. “It was the defining moment for the program. He decided. “It turned out that there was nothing inherently wrong with the system. Oh.’ His decision demonstrated trust.Chapter 1 • Developing a Missile: the power of autonoMy anD learning 49 is substantiating data and simulation.” . ‘I don’t trust you. But the failure focused the team on challenging all requirements and on testing every detail prior to flight. and I want to have an independent technical review. ‘We need six months to figure this out. and they went to work. He did not roll in on us. “A tremendous effort had gone into that first shot. The competitive phase didn’t allow either team to fly. ‘Are we up to it or not?’ We were all determined to get it fixed. I want a report every day. by the way.’ Terry could have said. was absolutely right.’ Instead. and six weeks later shot a missile and it flew beautifully. He did not send his people in to stand over our shoulders and say. That was no doubt one of the most pleasing moments in my career. We redesigned the circuit. and it set the tenor for how we moved forward as a program. He sent them down. ‘You really messed up here. We would not break the schedule. he asked me if I wanted some help. The lessons learned by this team about how to respond to adversity enabled us to solve bigger challenges and keep the remainder of the test program on track.

Jackie Leitzel sums up the success of the U. the contract was awarded to Lockheed Martin in 1998 for a cost of $400. Technology. the Undersecretary of Defense for Acquisition. government-Lockheed Martin JASSM team: “Although the estimated unit cost of JASSM when the program was launched in 1995 was $800.” . and Logistics. the David Packard Excellence in Acquisition Award. In June 2002.S.000. in recognition of their exemplary innovations in the defense acquisition process. the team received the DoD’s highest acquisition honor. Pete Aldridge. which was presented by C.50 Mastering the Leadership roLe in project ManageMent And stay on track it did.000 per unit.

shape. and Jeffrey Russell Initial Stages: Making Progress by Splitting Yad Vashem is a memorial site to the six million Jews killed by the Nazis. I have always wondered if architecture is capable of evoking the same emotions that we experience listening to music. concludes his book Yad Vashem—The Architecture of Memory as follows: “No design I have ever undertaken was so charged with symbolic associations. I often become a voyeur and watch visitors’ reactions and listen to their conversations. It seemed that every move. When I am there. which opened in March 2005. I am constantly aware of how intensely personal the feelings provoked are and how individual 51 . I am amazed at the diversity of interpretations and reactions. Now that the public has possessed the complex. At Yad Vashem. and sequence elicited multiple interpretations and endless debate. Moshe Safdie. The 45-acre site located near Jerusalem contains several museums and various research and educational centers. who is a leading international designer. Zvi Ziklik. The largest museum on site is the new Holocaust History Museum.2 Building of Memory: Managing Creativity Through Action by Alexander Laufer. form. The architect of this museum.

52 Mastering the Leadership roLe in project ManageMent and particular. Over the years. had been awarded this project through an international competition. he had learned to appreciate such conflicts because of their eventual positive impact on the quality of the team’s decisions. the chief curator. It was also difficult to reconcile diverging opinions in an analytical way because at this creative stage of the project. That is. It should be noted that both the chief curator and the architect enjoyed a unique and powerful status in the project. also served as chairman of the Yad Vashem Directorate of the Holocaust Martyrs’ and Heroes’ Remembrance Authority. and the architect Moshe Safdie. Shimon was worried that such rivalry would hurt collaboration between the other members of the project team and that it would eventually hamper project progress. Shimon was already an experienced project manager at the time and was used to internal conflicts in his project teams. however rarely. most decisions were based more on ideas and less on facts. Avner. he was a member of the project team and head of the client organization at the same time. who is regarded as a world renowned architect. Loud voices and even shouting were known to accompany the passionate and intense debates about the fundamental concepts of the design that constantly took place between the chief curator of the museum. It is at these moments that I feel architecture can. move us as deeply as music can. and his proposal had been selected by an independent committee composed of highly esteemed experts and public figures. Safdie. recalls another kind of music that prevailed when he was appointed to lead the project from the early stages of the design. Avner Shalev. the project manager of the Holocaust History Museum. These conflicts often sounded more like a competition between two fierce opponents rather than a healthy debate between two members of the same team.” Shimon Kornfeld. . But this time was different. Shimon realized that navigating between these two strong personalities and their respective teams would require a great deal of creativity on his own part as well.

” Thus. the project manager. The walls of the prism envelope had a unique architectural design based on ‘exposed concrete’ elements with no external cladding or coating. They were simply too powerful. but each one felt that the other side was somehow attempting to “own” the entire project. as an unsupported protrusion. unadorned—without any exterior waterproofing or cladding or any interior insulation or finishes. I wanted just the basic structure—concrete walls and floors and glass to let the light in from above. The concern on the curators’ side was that the spectacular design of the building would be so dominant that it would stand by itself as a memorial and would overshadow the central role of the exhibitions. Because of the nature of this project—remembering the Holocaust—both designers were totally committed to the success of the mission.” The architect explained his radical demands: “I was determined to cast the entire museum monolithically. jointless. at varying angles. We were worried that certain components of this unique and extraordinary monument might be impossible to execute.53 Thus. it is no surprise that Shimon came to the following conclusion: “The contractor will be required to ‘sculpt’ the concrete elements in order to realize the architect’s wild dream.” Shimon approached an expert in executing complex elements made of “architectural concrete” and asked him to examine the feasibility of executing the proposed design. could not have dealt with these two designers like he would have any other member of the project team. The expert provided a list of recommendations to . The truth is that Shimon himself was also very concerned about the design of the structure: “The museum’s central bloc was designed as a prism that penetrates into the ground and ‘erupts’ from it. Shimon. the unique shape of Safdie’s structure worrying the curators was the very reason that his design had been chosen. therefore. Ironically.

had designed buildings of similar character that had been successfully executed and that served as a source of inspiration and a place of pilgrimage. Ishai requested that Shimon split the . Given that the estimated cost of the museum building was about 40 million dollars. the architect seemed to have the power and the determination to stick to his design. Undertaking this tour.54 Mastering the Leadership roLe in project ManageMent render the execution more feasible. Ishai Amrami. I had some harsh arguments with Shimon and with Shimon’s predecessor about the management of the design and particularly about our proceedings vis-á-vis Safdie. despite some discomfort on the part of the client.’” Still. In an attempt to convince Shimon. it was only one component of it. I felt that they avoided confrontations with the famous architect and in several cases. we saw structures that were amazing in their complexity. as well as other leading architects around the world. and the project manager with some aspects of the design. Safdie suggested that they visit a few of these sites abroad. I really did not know how one can build the external envelope of this unique building.” Even the director general of Yad Vashem. but only a few of his recommendations were accepted by Safdie. The cost of the entire project was estimated at 100 million dollars. the curators. was not fully satisfied with the design of the building: “During the project. Although the new Holocaust History museum was the heart of the new development at Yad Vashem. Safdie reiterated his opinion that the project must be imparted with a unique character and that he himself. did not alleviate Shimon’s concerns: “On the tour. but at that time only 45 million dollars had already been procured. however. The project that Shimon was managing was much larger and covered additional buildings and infrastructure work throughout the Yad Vashem site. chose to ‘sacrifice’ the functionality of a certain area for the ‘benefit’ of an ‘architectural whim. but the structure designed for Yad Vashem seemed to me to be more problematic than they were.

Potential donors tend to respond more favorably to our appeals when they can see real action on site and when the actual structure starts rising on the site. enabling him to cope better with the many unique challenges posed by execution of the design. and accelerating the beginning of construction was crucial for obtaining financing for the project. in which any and all contractors are invited to submit their proposals. Thus. the gap in needed resources and the splitting process unexpectedly turned out to be a huge help for Shimon. Even with the difficulties of starting construction on the building before design of all the systems was complete. That .” Surprisingly. Yad Vashem finances all its projects from donations. like most public organizations. Shimon responded favorably to Ishai’s request. Shimon felt that creating a fait accompli would put a quicker end to the bitter conflict between the curators and the architect. Shimon explained that decoupling the building of the museum from the rest of the project would allow him and his team to focus all their attention on execution of the most difficult component of the entire project. Moreover. the one with the radical design and stringent requirements. generally chooses its contractors via the traditional process. and other systems in the building had not been completed.55 construction of the museum building from the rest of the project and issue the tender for it as early as possible: “I was aware that the design of the electrical. Middle Stages: Making Progress by Uniting Shimon surprised Ishai again when he insisted on an unconventional process for selecting the contractor who would build the new museum. Yad Vashem. and the one with the least expensive proposal is the one selected for the job. mechanical. However.

Shimon was fully aware that this . the client preferred to stick to the traditional approach. He presented his ideas to the client. Also.56 Mastering the Leadership roLe in project ManageMent was exactly what bothered Shimon. but would lead to disastrous financial results: “It was very clear to me that not every contractor would be able to cope with the ambitious and intricate design of the building and its stringent and ‘quality-based’ requirements. I was sure that only a few contractors could meet these extremely radical demands. Yet. I envisioned that the contractor would have to cope with endless changes during construction—changes because more than a few components in the architectural design were simply not feasible. The chances that a contractor selected on the basis of cost alone would be able and willing to stay responsive to such a stream of changes and still maintain high-quality requirements would certainly be extremely low. the curators were still debating fundamental conceptual ideas regarding the design of the exhibitions. and the winning contractor would be selected on the basis of multiple factors. As a matter of fact. explained his rationale. and shared his successful past experience with unconventional approaches to selecting a contractor. Moreover. According to this approach. various criteria for prequalifying the bidders would have to be met. and it was clear that the late submission of their detail requirements would lead to additional changes in the design of the building. and the architect refused to change them and changes because the design of the building systems was far from ready and would inevitably call for changes in the current design of the building. not only the total cost of construction. primarily to avoid taking any risks. selecting the least expensive contractor rather than the most suitable one would not only severely compromise the quality of the product.” Shimon recommended that the client embrace an unconventional approach for selecting the contractor. He was worried that for such an extremely complicated project.

They met with site management and learned that all the contractors had been selected strictly on the basis of cost. Nevertheless. This required my finding a site where selecting the contractor based on cost alone was clearly detrimental. the Ben-Gurion International Airport. with extremely negative outcomes for both project quality and schedule. The search turned out to be very quick. and invited the client to join him. mechanical.” Shimon organized a visit to a nearby large construction site. Shimon understood the pivotal role of selecting the general contractor: “I was of the opinion that selecting the right general contractor was by far the most important factor for the success of the project.57 unconventional approach was not free of risk and that he would be blamed in the case of failure. who were convinced of its virtues after observing firsthand the poor results of a project that had considered cost alone in selecting a contractor: “Where endless solid arguments in the office failed. and other specialty contractors. which enabled many unqualified contractors to join the project. Apparently. I realized that more arguments would probably not help me change their minds. he was determined to reverse the decision: “After several fruitless meetings. Shimon had the satisfaction of getting approval for his unconventional approach from Yad Vashem’s management. one brief site visit did the trick. I decided to try a new approach by providing them with concrete evidence through observation. who would be appointed later to work in parallel with the general contractor. seeing is believing.” The first tender to get underway was also the largest and most important one in the entire project—the tender for execution of the skeleton and structure envelope. Many contractors had declared bankruptcy. The selected contractor was supposed to function as the “general contractor” for the project and coordinate the activities of the various electrical. .

which is exactly why Shimon included it: “It was important to me to see whether the contractor was treating the project and the mockup as an important engineering challenge or just as a folly of the client’s which could be changed later on. recommendations from former clients. experience with similar projects. beyond the selection of the contractor. • Monetary bid: Only those contractors who successfully passed the first two stages were granted the right to continue to the final stage and to submit their monetary bids. Only those bidders who met the criteria continued on to the next stage. it . and a presentation by their proposed management team. and window details). door.58 Mastering the Leadership roLe in project ManageMent I was therefore determined not to err in this selection process. and I was prepared to invest every effort necessary to make it work.” Thus. Shimon carefully designated a three-stage selection process: • Preliminary screening: Criteria included the bidders’ financial robustness. and flexibility. the contractor would have to demonstrate an extremely high degree of competence. commitment. • Implementation test: The bidders were required to present their proposed methodology for construction and to execute a sample mockup of the special concrete elements of the structure (a small model that included an exposed concrete wall. However. I knew that for this challenging project to be successful. Both the client and many of the competing contractors did not fully understand the purpose of the second stage. I also knew that the best way to learn about these attitudes and capabilities would be by observing the contractor in action.” Based on these criteria and after reviewing all of the proposals received. Shimon selected the company most likely to be awarded the job as contractor.

he gave us feedback on the design as well as ideas for changes in the design to render it more implementable. was also concerned about the issue of staffing the contractor’s management team and supported Shimon’s intervention: “I had already failed in the past with large and promising contracting companies that chose to assign unsuitable project managers at the head of the pyramid. and integrity. the Director General. Based on my early and current impressions of Israel. the project manager proposed by one of the earlier bidders (whose offer had been rejected for financial reasons) as the person most suited to be project manager: “Israel was the same concrete specialist who we had approached in the initial stages of the project for a professional opinion as to the feasibility of the architectural design.59 was important to him to participate in the determination of the contractor’s management team as well. He selected Israel Chaskelevitch. To my delight.” Ishai. he was willing to agree to any request of ours as long as he was awarded the project. I indicated to him that he should try to join the company that seemed to be the winner. At this early stage. and I gave him a free hand in his efforts to shape the staffing of the contractor’s management team. I got a positive response from the company. resourcefulness. I felt that I could rely on his professionalism. I did not rush him. At the same time. The project manager on behalf of the contractor must be a person with a ‘head that doesn’t stop working.’ I fully trusted Shimon. I recalled that I was very impressed with his competency as well as with his creativity. Apparently.” The contractor’s on-site preparations for the onset of the work brought into sharp focus another key problem: how to enable visitors . I applied pressure on the director of the company and informed him that his chances would increase if Israel were to be included in their team as project manager. at this stage.

Shimon’s headaches were only just beginning: “Now that I was able to select a contractor and a project manager that fit the unique challenges of the project. and some were even impossible to execute. However.’ Ishai explained that “this solution not only prevented safety hazards.” Yet.” For his part. enabling visitors to come in ‘above the construction.60 Mastering the Leadership roLe in project ManageMent to continue touring the Yad VaShem site without affecting or being affected during the intensive construction activity. With the ambitious architectural design. I was not. Israel observed: “Shimon was in great distress due to the extensive design changes that the architects could not seem to stop introducing. The original solution called for a step-wise execution of the museum complex. But I was counting on Israel to refrain from abusing the situation. I realized that we would be unable to provide the contractor with execution drawings for all the project areas. I knew that I could easily confront Shimon and demand supplements to the contract for all those changes. Yet I decided not to do it. realizing how taxing this solution would be on site management time and focus. I tried to persuade the architect to change some especially complex and problematic execution details. Two temporary overhead pedestrian entrance bridges were built. a second solution was adopted. The architect suspected that I was trying. but did not succeed. with relocation of the visitor access roads accordingly. to ‘pull’ the project in directions that were undesirable for the client and refused . I did not have any doubt that we would have to cope with a stream of design changes during construction. at least not for the moment. it eventually saved the project a great deal of money and endless headaches. many building details remained unclear or were especially expensive to execute. and I knew that entering into the execution stage in such a state would open the door to monetary claims by the contractor. from the very beginning. I was supposed to be relaxed. Yet.

I was constantly seeking creative ideas for alternative solutions that would protect the interests of all those involved—solutions that would not be inferior to the original design.’ I had to make a move as soon as possible to gain the trust of both the architect and the client. At that critical point in time. which was to be cast entirely of special architectural concrete. But.61 to cooperate. it was important for me to check the architect’s willingness to compromise. at the same time. I estimated that the client. and this time I was . who was trying to reconcile both sides without compromising the project. In between the two was Shimon. allow us to shorten the execution time and reduce the financial cost. I understood that in order to ‘remain viable. was the first problem to put the architect’s versatility to the test. Due to the massive quantity of concrete required. with the designer on one side demanding absolute adherence to the original design regardless of whether it was at all feasible. while the contractor on the other side was adamant about his inability to execute many of the design details.” Two camps were actually forming. Israel himself was also looking for a creative way to put an end to the conflict: “I was debating as to how to help the architect off his high horse without offending him or damaging the project. as Israel explains.” Thus. the contractor needed a very large number of special and expensive forms in order to execute the castings within the set time schedule. did not in fact understand what he was signing. the prism design for the museum’s central hall. I chose to first tackle the issue of the architectural concrete elements in the prism structure. but that would. even the most expensive forms did not yield a final product of the quality anticipated by the architect: “All of my attempts and efforts to find an applicable and economic solution for the prism’s concrete elements were in vain. the project manager. although he approved the drawings.

I built a mockup of the proposed pre-cast solution. Israel took this success and ran with it: “The successful solution for the execution of the prism’s architectural concrete elements made me try and dare again. the architect benefited professionally from adopting the solution (several months later. After a week of deliberation. the client. “We all benefited from the change. and we all benefited from saving a great deal on expenses. he presented this solution at an international architecture conference). “In order to enable the architect to experience the proposed solution. this time with respect to the synagogue building. After much exploration. and the project manager. the architect. The client benefited from a shorter execution time. however. I proposed that the pre-cast elements be made separately at a makeshift factory and be assembled using joining bolts. Finally. Despite our .62 Mastering the Leadership roLe in project ManageMent ready to fight if my demands were rejected. The joining bolts that protruded from the pre-cast panels initially bothered the architect. and the client. to agree to such a fundamental change in the execution details of the prism walls was a kind of “decisive event” in the project in terms of developing a trust-based relationship between the contractor. the project manager benefited from easier on-site supervision made possible by the simple pre-cast execution. I decided to request that the architect move from a conventional execution of the prism walls by on-site casting to a pre-cast execution. the bolts started to grow on him and he even became ‘enamored’ with the solution.” The contractor’s success in persuading the architect. at this early stage of the project. my proposed solution was unanimously approved by the architect. The circumferential concrete wall of the main prayer hall was originally designed to be executed in a unique conic manner.

Throughout construction. we had to build a scaffold system up to 80 feet high to support the cantilever over the forest and access road during construction. and so the execution had to be meticulous and the joints between casting interruptions had to be highly accurate. and the complex itself was designed as an architectural focal point of extreme importance. situated at the heart of the museum. We had to work above the Jerusalem forest without damaging it. all of the parties benefited from my proposed solution. The well walls were to be illuminated with special lighting. since I agreed to significantly decrease the unit price on this item following the change in execution method. To my delight. For example. we could not succeed in casting this concrete element at the required level of quality. In this hallowed hall. . the final result of which would be identical in shape to the original concrete wall design. several mockups.63 many efforts. there would be a deep conic well whose walls were to be made of special architectural concrete castings. The architect treated this room with the appropriate reverence. were tested to make sure that the casting process and concrete quality met specifications. Again. the architect again agreed to my proposal after being convinced that his original design simply could not be executed. and we were allowed to cut down only three trees. I proposed to the client to change the design and substitute the concrete wall with a drywall-clad steel structure. some full-scale. the names of all the communities annihilated in the Holocaust are commemorated on the peripheral walls. Israel recalls the difficult environmental constraints of the work: “We had to embrace a mindset of ‘versatile’ formwork. In the middle of the floor.” The concrete work took about a year and involved 240 different castings.” Another example of the contractor’s creative thinking that eventually led to a brilliant solution was seen in the Hall of Names.

I worked tirelessly to ensure that the prequalification process would help us to select a contractor high in competence. Cooperation and mutual trust continued to increase as work on the project progressed. commitment. I felt that the brilliant solutions Israel proposed were considerate of the architect’s extreme sensitivity about the unique design and at the same time met the client’s expectations regarding the quality of the final product. Israel excelled in that he managed to identify the architectural design problems and. the architect and client had been reserved and suspected that the contractor’s primary purpose was to find shortcuts and cut costs. but the final result. Even had we gone to extreme lengths. Israel managed to win their favor after proving himself to be part of the solution rather than part of the problem.” If at the beginning of the journey. was so impressive that the client and architect not only approved the solution.64 Mastering the Leadership roLe in project ManageMent However. after the peripheral lighting was completed. The proposed solution initially led to serious arguments with the architect. Israel again anticipated problems with executing the design: “In my opinion. I proposed an original solution: to carefully excavate the conic well in the rock and leave it in its natural form. it was impossible to execute the concrete walls at the depth of the conic well according to the architect’s design. but also thanked us for our initiative. in parallel. which were often crucial for transforming challenging design concepts into reality. and flexibility. we would not have achieved the required accuracy.” . without the concrete cladding. present us with proposals for their solution. We were very lucky and got them all. He invested time and money in finding practical solutions. Shimon was thrilled with Israel’s contribution to the project: “Early on.

novel engineering techniques. mockups. Thus. the new exhibition would be composed of a multimedia presentation incorporating personal artifacts. with the testimonies and artifacts accentuating the individual stories. describes the underlying concept for the design of the exhibition: “My starting point and basic assumption was that as the years advanced. each devoted to a different chapter in the history of the Holocaust. unlike the exhibition in the old museum at Yad Vashem. and the memory of the Holocaust would become like that of any other historical event.” Final Stages: Making Progress Through Versatility Avner Shalev.65 Safdie himself praised the contractor’s commitment and creativity: “It would take many experiments. the chief curator of the Holocaust History Museum. In order to prevent this drift and enable future generations to connect to a memory with inherent significance for their identity and values. the museum would present . It was designed to span 10 exhibition halls. which was primarily composed of photographs. and a dedicated contractor to realize the building. All together. The exhibits would be set up chronologically. a memory with the capacity to shape the future.” The group of curators embraced this vision and developed a very ambitious and innovative objective: educating the young generation by personalizing the abstract concept of the Holocaust. I realized that we would have to place educational work at the center of our endeavors. The stainless-steel buttons that conceal the post-tensioning anchors at both ends of the prism are visual testimony of the ingenuity involved. individual mourning would dissipate. the feeling of severed limbs would become dulled.

such as artwork and letters. The piping had to be positioned in its final locations in the forms before the walls and floors were cast. The curators focused on preparations of the various exhibits. as the project advanced. he took the . etc. otherwise. since various kinds of piping (electricity.500 personal items. They behaved as if there were two different and quite independent projects: the building and the exhibitions. was not always enough. the flexibility and degree of freedom remaining for the curators gradually declined. the struggle between the curators and the project manager flared up anew. excavation or sawing of the concrete would be required. when I had to get the data and force a decision.” However.” Just leaving the curators enough time. realized that some of the curators had difficulty in reading architectural drawings. tiling of floor. When Israel. As Shimon recalls: “I tried to leave the curators enough time to make decisions right up until close to casting time of the various concrete elements.66 Mastering the Leadership roLe in project ManageMent the personal stories of 90 Holocaust victims and survivors and would include approximately 2. But the curators wished to maintain as much flexibility as possible in light of the fact that the exhibition program was still being worked on. As a result. however. computers. and so on). security.) had to be passed through the structure’s floors and walls. Before each of the critical stages (casting of walls and floor. It did not take Shimon long to realize that the curators did not care much about the project schedule. closing of roof openings. lighting. and only on them. even though he needed their timely input in order to maintain construction progress: “Infrastructure preparations for the exhibitions and displays required joint teamwork between the exhibition curators and the construction designers. they treated the exhibitions as a ‘once in a lifetime project’ without any regard for time constraints in their decision-making process. the contractor. communications.

and it enabled the curators to reach timely decisions regarding the design of this sensitive space. the director general. and so on. striving toward controlled and constant lighting.” Israel’s commitment to the success of the entire project. had designed the structure’s envelope so as to allow only a minimal amount of natural light to penetrate into the interior spaces. penetrates into the structure throughout the entire day. I was not really clear on what the curators wanted to create in this space. on the other hand. and it seemed to me that it was not clear enough to them either. . These models clarified. The architect. The contractor decided to take the initiative and. in a tangible manner. were interested in installing large skylights in order to get as close as possible to the natural state in which light. Israel prepared computerized simulations as well as 1:1 mockups made of wooden boards and geotechnical fabric.67 initiative to assist them. Shimon describes how Israel’s versatility contributed to expediting their decision making: “Some of the curators did not understand the complicated design of the spaces designated for the exhibitions. with all of its variability. In order to help the curators familiarize themselves with the relevant spaces. highlights another example in which Israel went out of his way to help the curators: “One of the spaces in the exhibition area was designated for a re-creation of the death train that transported victims to the gas chambers. the joining of the portable partitions. early on. the hanging alternatives of the lighting fixtures. The curators. proposed to bring the original train car and tracks and display them so that their true dimensions could be experienced. The effect of the physical model was especially great. of serving the needs of the client. the hanging of the pictures. was again demonstrated in the conflict between the curators and the architect over lighting.” Ishai.

and it was clear to me that if I progressed with my approved plans. and eventually for the success of the entire project. Ishai could not overcome the curators. releasing the project manager from any involvement. and other special infrastructure elements). construction of displays. I was witness to the vigorous and incessant confrontations between the architect and the curators regarding the desired amount of light.” . acoustic ceilings. when it was time to begin the finishing work in the exhibition areas (including multimedia. I might ‘trip up’ the client.” However. and me for overcoming or eliminating problems. I had in my possession supposedly approved execution plans. the curators persuaded Ishai to entrust this activity to their exclusive care. Thus.” Ishai noted that: “One can’t overemphasize the extreme importance of the teamwork between Shimon. and this ended up saving the client a lot of money since the design of the skylights changed drastically later on. he was not in a position to impose his own participation on them: “It was clear that at this stage. the client informed Shimon that he would be taking this issue upon himself and did not require Shimon’s services. and Shimon felt that without the client’s support. Israel. I did not object to Ishai’s suggestion to leave the responsibility for the finishing work in the exhibition areas in their hands. Under pressure from the curators. This time. this time. and I could have gone ahead and ordered all of the special glass components. Shimon did not put up any resistance and respected the client’s decision. due to the unique stage of the project. Israel decided that the best way to expedite progress would be to wait: “The issue of the skylights troubled me greatly. The utmost commitment and intensive involvement of the curators was required for the finishing work.68 Mastering the Leadership roLe in project ManageMent However. I preferred to wait with the execution.

When another four months had passed and the work was still not progressing according to schedule. the dedication of the new Yad Vashem Holocaust History Museum in Jerusalem. to persuade the curators to transfer this area of responsibility over to Israel and so. Ishai continued to manage the other components of finishing work. Shimon warned Ishai that the execution of the elements was moving slowly and in an uncontrolled manner. The issue of the construction of displays had become critical and was starting to delay the envelope contractor of the building: “Only after I explained the grave situation into which we had got ourselves to Ishai. the music that Safdie was talking about in his book. did he manage. the harmony. opened up the bottleneck that had formed.” Shimon reflects on the long process to completion: “The visitor sees the end result. Glowing reviews applauded “the supportive and complementary relationship between the architectural dimension and the exhibition design. The outstanding versatility and commitment to the success of the project on the part of the execution team paid off. the architect and the curators. with leaders from 40 countries attending the inauguration.” Another remarked on the fact that “the collaboration and counterpoint between curatorship and architectural design remain admirably balanced and harmonious. the client finally decided to entrust Shimon with the responsibility for managing the unique elements and the area of multimedia. Shimon realized that the client was having difficulties making decisions. On March 15. in fact. In the end. must have worked together in great harmony all .69 After about two months of status quo in this matter. unaware that it all started with an extremely noisy and squeaky music of endless shouting and conflict. It appears that the two designers. after much effort. Israel took place. 2005.” After the problem of the construction of displays in the exhibition areas was solved.

” . when in fact this transformation was accomplished only through the constant dance between ideas and action. who enabled each creative entity to flourish and nurtured the fusion of the two separate disciplines into a united and eternal cradle of memory. and indeed the creativity.70 Mastering the Leadership roLe in project ManageMent along. It was the ingenuity. of the implementers.

in turn. It was constructed of state-of-the-art composites. and foam. program manager at the Dryden Flight Research Center. Edward Hoffman. Reflecting on the risky nature of the program.” says Jenny Baer-Riedhart. which. This was particularly true in 1994.3 Flying Solar-Powered Airplanes: Soaring High on Spirit and Systems by Alexander Laufer. The upper surface of the aircraft’s 100-foot wing was covered almost completely by thin solar-cell arrays that collected the sun’s energy and converted it into electricity. and Don Cohen I Was the Enemy “‘Where’s the rest of the plane?’ That was my reaction when I saw the Pathfinder. when we kicked off the ERAST 71 . “I had just been named program manager and was seeing the plane up close for the first time.” Pathfinder was AeroVironment’s solar-powered airplane and one of four aircrafts that were part of NASA’s Environmental Research Aircraft and Sensor Technology (ERAST) program launched at the end of 1994. I had to ask. Jenny explains: “Unmanned Aerial Vehicle (UAV) technology is inherently risky and not considered an especially sound investment. plastics. powered six small motors with propellers. ‘Will it fly?’ It was an odd-looking bird. NASA’s Center for aeronautical research located in California.

and the companies would be able to apply their work toward commercialization. but I naively thought that all I had to do was explain how successful the program was and. I learned a key lesson in working with multiple customers: Always know the folks you’re meeting with. voilá. Now all we needed was approval for the budget from NASA’s headquarters in Washington. “I made several appearances at NASA Headquarters to brief higher-ups about the status of the ERAST program. and always tailor what you’re going to say based on who you know will be there. The idea behind ERAST was to minimize the risks as much as possible by joining forces with the best companies in the industry. I had just finished up another program to develop a next-generation UAV. If the alliance was successful. securing funding for this project would prove to be no easy task and would require a lot of persistence. “At my first ERAST meetings. nobody was ready to give up on this technology. it was the cost and operational factors that made them unpopular. then NASA would be able to demonstrate the viability of UAVs for atmospheric science. but the companies would also have to pony up their own resources. I had anticipated some resistance. The knowledge was there to build UAVs.72 Mastering the Leadership roLe in project ManageMent program. I wasn’t as attuned to the personalities in the room as I should have been. I believed . This would be the first industry-led alliance of its type. NASA would provide some funding to the companies. I would win them over. “ERAST represented a whole new way of doing business for NASA. “But as it turned out. but they were all university-led. commitment. I didn’t know what their requirements were or what their problems might be with what I was selling. Early on in this endeavor. Even though the plane had crashed. The agency had been involved in similar partnerships before. and flexibility.

I was perceived as a threat. even unique. or what we endearingly referred to as ‘murder boards. I represented someone who would suck up the resources that they needed in other areas. I met with people from Dryden who frequently gave presentations at Headquarters about their programs. “But before I went anywhere near NASA Headquarters again to make my pitch. that I could get recognition and congressional backing for it. even as the enemy. successful. with a tight budget. From their standpoint. and that it didn’t come with a big price tag. I found people from my Center and the ERAST alliance with areas of expertise similar to those I would address at Headquarters and set up role-playing sessions. . and I used them as a sounding board. and when they told me what I’d be killed on.’ I briefed them with the charts that I was going to take. I realized that the only way I was going to cultivate supporters was by putting myself in other people’s shoes and learning what they wanted to get out of the program. “I imagined that I was on the other side of the table. 73 in my heart of hearts that ERAST was important for NASA and that I could convince them of that. You might even say that I went to boot camp. “What I failed to recognize was that people are not convinced just because the seller believes in the product. “Instead. I did some serious training. and that I was looking at having to cut programs. I got in shape. The seller needs to understand what the buyer wants from a product. I changed what I had to in order to stay alive. And that was how I packaged it. They weren’t interested in hearing anything about a program aimed at developing UAVs. What would I want to hear if I was in that position? I would want to make sure that the program was viable.

Then I said to them. our focus was on potential economic impact. but it’s not a fair fight. McDonald Douglas.74 Mastering the Leadership roLe in project ManageMent “I gathered information from NASA’s own reports and figured out what mattered most to them. Aeronautics made up about 10 percent of the total NASA budget in 1995 when I was associate administrator . ‘I understand what you need.” Bob Whitehead. succeed or fail because of politics. and do. and that was to be found in subsonic transports and technologies that supported Boeing. The most compelling sales pitch you can make is not that you have something wonderful to sell. Honeywell. But ‘politics’ doesn’t have to be a dirty word if it means working closely and openly with your customers and stakeholders. Talk about visual aids—I had one with forty pictures showing all the things that we were doing and how they related to existing programs. When you’re trying to sell programs in this kind of political pressure cooker. and it was easy for them to say. tells the same story from his perspective: “In Aeronautics. “There are times when the role of the project leader is simply to sell the project. the associate administrator for Aeronautics at NASA Headquarters. The audience was blown away.’ “Everyone tries to get a piece of the agency’s budget.’ So projects can. and the other 800-pound gorillas. Those people knew our strategy. I wasn’t the person telling Jenny Baer-Riedhart to take her solar-powered airplane and go back home to Dryden. other things can be viewed as distractions. She came in at the level of people who work for me.’ I brought charts that were worth more to them than an original Picasso. ‘Whitehead doesn’t want this. ‘This is how I can deliver what you’re looking for. It is.

‘Okay. saw the light. they were behaving like entrepreneurs ready to do whatever it took for the success of their project! They got turned away the first time. “So when someone suggested that the projects we were proposing weren’t anything to get excited about. To put that in perspective. exciting things you’re doing. Congress. ‘These whackos at Dryden came here talking about 100. Then the wind shifts and they want to know what cool. selling programs to the Administrator. One day the right answer is to sell them on economic impact. I had to ask. 75 at Headquarters.’ And that’s exactly what they did.’” . pushing what they had to offer. you are always looking to spice things up. and the White House. ‘Is there any more spice out there? What about some innovation?’ Then one of my guys said. this fits the recipe. It was more like. Turbine engines are no longer the answer. “When you live in the world that I lived in at NASA Headquarters. came back with a new message. then you’d better take it and run with it. They were clearly willing to take risks and challenge the status quo—in short. ‘Hey.000-foot airplanes and solar power. and understood what the ERAST folks were doing. 60 percent of the budget went to the Human Space Flight division. which wasn’t doing anything about the economy once you got beyond Teflon and Tang. But then there was Aeronautics—and it was all about the economy. but wouldn’t go away—and they deserve a tremendous amount of credit for that—until finally we said.’ Well. got pushed aside again. why don’t we look at that? Can we broaden the appeal? It wasn’t that I was some genius sitting at Headquarters who suddenly looked out. “Jenny and her colleagues at Dryden showed up at NASA Headquarters and stuck their noses in. if we fit this ERAST thing into the budget.

Ray Morgan. As Ray explains: “What persuaded them to let us stay was our experience.76 Mastering the Leadership roLe in project ManageMent Systems Are Our Best Friends Even after NASA approved the budget. We had been developing UAVs for over 13 years and had seen all the ways to crash them. The other alliance members had less experience than we did in developing UAVs. The Pathfinder was by no means AeroVironment’s first foray into solar-powered aircraft. “Although most of us knew the others from prior experience. the industry as a whole was plagued by the duplication of stupid mistakes and problems that had been encountered and solved many years earlier. “One problem that many small UAV companies shared at that time was the ‘silo’ syndrome. the other companies recognized that learning from others was perhaps the only way to avoid repeating their mistakes. we were old timers in the UAV industry.” But AeroVironment had an advantage over the other companies in terms of technical know-how. We at AeroVironment believed that our solar plane was uniquely suited to the extreme duration and altitude goals of the ERAST program. For . which simply meant that they attacked each task as if they were the first ones who had tried to solve a particular problem. and they almost voted us out of the alliance. Compared to the other three companies. vice president of AeroVironment Design Development Center. some of the other companies involved were not quite as enthusiastic as Bob Whitehead. working together in a collaborative way would be an entirely new way of thinking about our relationship to one another. recalls the reservations of the companies in the alliance: “Initially. As a consequence. In the end. and they probably didn’t have as much appreciation for learning from the past. the other companies considered Pathfinder to be too impractical.

“NASA also brought to the table its vast experience in risk management. This meant that there was only one of any given component. the alliance went through an initial courtship phase. but it was that kind of industry. Assigning a quantitative measure to a subjective judgment of risk is a difficult concept. That may sound a bit harsh. “Like most new relationships. But if I have an idea and you have an idea. had lost out to each other on prior programs. for these large.’ “NASA provided AeroVironment with valuable advice about how best to implement redundant systems in its critical components. ‘If I have a dollar and you have a dollar. NASA’s input was critical as AeroVironment began focusing on system optimization. particularly when the system had to automatically determine which sensors were working properly and which were not. and I give you mine and you give me yours. we were all rivals in a fairly ruthless and highly competitive industry. we had relied on single thread systems across every major component of the UAV. In the first prototype of Pathfinder. . followed by a few spats. then we both have two ideas. This was something AeroVironment had never formally approached. crashing could not be taken lightly. but it is critical in conducting flight tests safely. more or less. built in the early 1980s. I think it was best said (I’ve forgotten by whom). before it settled into an ongoing relationship that worked. It used to be joked that UAV manufacturers put ‘more holes in the desert than Arnold Palmer. 77 one thing. I tended to see us as four hungry dogs looking at the same piece of meat. and I give you mine and you give me yours.’ However. oneof-a-kind UAVs with NASA logos and public scrutiny. for the good of all.’ as we came to think of ourselves. expensive. The ‘big four. but it was old hat to the folks at NASA Dryden who were on the review team. and if that one component failed. we each still have a dollar. then the whole UAV would likely fail.

Still. we had to tailor almost everything about the program. The companies could take NASA’s advice or they could ignore it altogether. particularly at high altitudes. even though they often had no prior background with UAVs specifically. not all of the companies in the alliance were willing to accept NASA’s advice.” However. The point was that NASA had within its ranks a wealth of experience and judgment in developing and testing unique air vehicles. Man for man.78 Mastering the Leadership roLe in project ManageMent “Because ERAST was a different way of doing business. their crashes might well have been avoided. share information. The unfortunate thing is that had X listened to what NASA’s experts pointed out during the reviews. On paper X was a superb company. and the atmosphere we were operating in was the same. NASA would bring in people with experience in a particular area of aircraft development and testing.’ while NASA nods its head and says okay—but that’s what we did. Despite not being familiar with these particular types of light wing structures. In a typical NASA contract. One of these companies we will call X. or see reviews as something that they might learn from. you wouldn’t rely on the contractor saying. actually. . “For the ERAST reviews. they crashed their UAV—twice. despite their superior IQs. ‘We’re good to go. their attitude towards NASA was negative. employee for employee. and that included how we did reviews. they were still experts in physics and engineering. They chose not to discuss their problems. “Generally. every one of them was a genius in his own right. Many times they provided the most value by simply asking questions. Jenny Baer-Riedhart illustrates the consequences: “The companies who were not as open about accepting NASA’s advice faired worse in this alliance.

After six seconds the data were still screwy. deputy project manager at NASA Dryden Flight Research Center. and so it did. the UAV was doomed to crash. but by then the aircraft had rolled upside down. But by the time the pilot finally realized that the lost data was not merely the result of the switch between the regular data link and the backup. NASA had pointed out that using a redundant system would safeguard against a catastrophic turn of events should the critical component in question fail. illustrates how using a simulator for training can even contribute to the risk of crashing when discrepancies in the system are not resolved: . the pilot on the ground noticed that the sensor was not updating properly. the UAV flew out of control. and switched from the regular link to the backup. They. rejected NASA’s advice about developing a redundant system for a critical component. “Here again. 79 “When X crashed its UAV. it was too late—the UAV was pointed straight down and could not be recovered. they had to switch from the primary data link to the secondary data link. concluded that no data was coming down. the UAV had two data links. With no backup means of recovery short of an act of God. too. In this case. call them Y. When a critical component failed during one test flight. When the component failed during a flight test. the data coming down disappeared for about six seconds. “Another company in the alliance. also crashed their UAV. But each time that the data were switched between the links. X ignored the advice. To conduct one particular operation during flight.” John Del Frate. NASA had spotted this and warned them of the catastrophic consequences of not switching to a redundant system. the precipitating cause was the failure of a single thread component.

One guy at the top typically wrote our flight procedures. In the cockpit. but remarkably often it is not. but he wasn’t paying attention to them. “In one instance. it was too late—he broke the landing gear. that if you are going to use a simulator. didn’t work the same way as the simulator. Second. and there were things he didn’t think about.80 Mastering the Leadership roLe in project ManageMent “Flying these airplanes was risky. one person is not as smart as a group. The instrument.’ as we called it. We had a problem on a flight and had to shut off the engine and glide down into a dry lake bed. and often he would leave out a lot because—after all— he’s just one guy. There were other ways in which he could have known that the plane was exceeding safe speed and was in danger of crashing. a pilot practiced on a simulator with an instrument gauging the behavior of his plane on descent. “Hence. a rate meter. it needs to mimic the actual flight hardware as accurately as possible. The pilot ended up coming down too fast. When he finally realized this. It turned out that his ground control station. It should be self-evident. The companies used simulators to practice their operations and procedures. we weren’t procedures-oriented at AeroVironment. a person at the top may not understand things in the same way as someone looking at it from a different perspective. the rate meter didn’t measure descent greater than 2000 feet per minute.” Ray Morgan explains the way in which procedures should be developed and refined: “For the longest time. told him how many feet per minute he was descending. and the pilots needed ‘stick time. This flawed training cost the company nearly a year of repair work. we realized a couple of common sense things to help refine our methods of writing flight procedures: First. in essence the cockpit. such as a technician who is .

If the person writing a procedure had gotten used to calling something by a nickname. the person(s) who actually performs the task creates the procedure for it. We also invite other people who were not directly involved to provide some objectivity. they need to be sharpened and honed. Certainly. not to mention potential disaster. On the next iteration. “The most significant problem we found with autocratically handing down procedures was that people were far less likely to follow procedures that they neither created nor could change. the labeling is usually very close to being error-free. What’s more. “Another problem that stemmed from having one guy write the procedure was that different nomenclatures were being used. Providing this type of ownership is invaluable and is also the most efficient way to create the procedure. but even so we recognized that we had to provide a way to handle inevitable mistakes. Procedures are tools. We get a number of changes from that—and that’s generally where we catch inconsistencies in nomenclature.’ “Thus. Our first rule was always to ‘put the person closest to the problem closest to the solution. If you bring together all the people who understand parts of the system. “The process for the refinement of procedures at AeroVironment starts with reading through the procedure with a group of people who were involved in writing it. that’s how he would identify it in the procedure. All good craftsmen like to sharpen their own tools. people feel less stress when they can control how they perform their tasks. we had people cross-checking their procedures with coworkers. whenever possible. . 81 actually performing the task. But not everyone who had to use the procedure was familiar with that particular nickname. and like tools. you will develop better procedures by using each of their areas of expertise. making it a recipe for frustration.

where we do the last run-through of the whole process before the actual flight. usually the pilot or a stability and control engineer.82 Mastering the Leadership roLe in project ManageMent “Next. and it requires an incredible amount of coordination with team members. “This process of continuous improvement by the ‘owner’ of the procedure accelerates the rate of development of the procedure by allowing both the ‘owner’ and the users to rapidly refine a procedure and to respond quickly to changes in the system during the flight test program. correcting any discrepancies that we might catch is the responsibility of whoever ‘owns’ that procedure. and we practice just as we would if we were going through a flight—a prototype of sorts. “After the flight. At this stage. . using the latest rewrite. The person who ‘owns’ the procedure makes note of any issues that come up and corrects the procedure before the next practice.” John Del Frate reiterates how crucial following a well-developed set of procedures can be to the outcome: “One cannot say enough about developing and documenting a good set of procedures and practicing them and analyzing them. and practicing them again and again until they run as predictably as clockwork. and we discuss any ‘red-marked’ changes to a procedure made during the flight. then rewriting them if necessary. it takes lots of time. It is grueling work. Our next meeting is with the same people at the ground control stations. This time we have the actual hardware in front of us. we get everyone together for another read-through. But you have to do it because this is the time when you discover discrepancies that can make the difference between saving a plane and crashing it. we get a group together to look at whether there were any abnormalities that could be attributed to a procedure.

” Another tool used for communication in the Pathfinder project was the PERT (Program Evaluation and Review Technique) chart. Jeffrey Bauer. Everyone in the alliance had access to the database. first as chief engineer and later as deputy project manager. not solar power. chief engineer at NASA Dryden Flight Research Center. This is one of the most common tools employed by project managers and the planning and control staff. they were blown away by how precise the details were. Ray Morgan also adopted the PERT chart for communication purposes in order to keep everyone . 83 “I saw a lot of cases where maintaining the project schedule started to become a problem. describes this system and how he benefited from it: “Data memos were intended to communicate to everyone in the program what was going on with the Pathfinder project. “When I joined the ERAST program in 1995. and the idea was to make it easy for anyone to generate a data memo. Here. Aside from the title block. and certainly not with such a unique vehicle as the Pathfinder. When I showed their procedures to some of the guys at NASA Dryden who were in the flight-test business. Even notes jotted on scraps of paper proved worthy of making it into the file. I had a lot to keep track of—four flight projects and numerous technology development initiatives.they were religious about how they developed procedures.. and sharing all the data that were used and developed by the team. and some of the companies started to basically skimp on the amount of time that they spent practicing their procedures. documenting.” AeroVironment also developed a unique system for collecting. My background was in flight research.. What allowed me to stay abreast of their progress was AeroVironment’s system of using project data memos. there was no format required. Not AeroVironment.

it becomes a valuable. interdependencies. Initially. As Ray Morgan recalls: “When we were approached by NASA about becoming part of this alliance. “The chart was much more than window dressing. next to the flight test crew and the airplane. money. but over time we started seeing others get into the spirit. validated them to the team. Enthusiasm for accomplishing the next goal was reborn each time we looked at the graphics on our wall. the first . or you name it. it seemed difficult to believe that even if we shared with the other companies. they would share equally with us—whether it was shared data.84 Mastering the Leadership roLe in project ManageMent focused on “the big picture. It also allows the team to mark it up interactively. and did not just become faded wallpaper. our rivals. “The importance of working together as an alliance to the success of the Pathfinder cannot be overstated. The fact that these charts were actually updated.” thereby rendering it as a tool used by all the team members: “We put our chart on the side of a large container right in the hangar. We usually incorporated these changes into a computer model and reprinted it once or twice a week during flight tests. graphic depiction of the work plan. we felt that we were the only ones living up to the letter of the agreement. as well as which ones may need help.” Overall. When posted.’ This became a critical tool for the team. this kind of openness set an important precedent for what would become common practice among all the members of the alliance. In 1995. hardware. and people on the critical path. adding tasks that come up when necessary and checking off tasks as they are completed. milestones. as we often referred back to it in team meetings to help redefine the importance of a current task and to see how it fit into ‘the big picture.

we were able to reach our performance goal for the year. and we had not yet flown above a thousand feet. This 12-hour flight not only broke a world record but was a triumph for everyone in the alliance because as a program we were able to point to our impressive performance as a reason to continue funding the program.000 feet we reached in September 1995. it’s hard to predict what it will cost. when I think about the 50. specifically Jenny’s. but we simply hadn’t gotten through the low-altitude tests before we had spent it all. we ran out of money. NASA also recognized that there are unknowns. Thanks to this. 85 full year of the program. we were able to borrow money from the other members of the alliance who hadn’t spent all of their funds.000 feet into the stratosphere during the first solar-powered high-altitude flight. We billed it as an ERAST accomplishment instead of AeroVironment’s: ‘All for one. understood the risks involved in developing and testing new technologies.” That success in working as an alliance is what helped Ray and his team to overcome another unforeseen crisis in the month following their memorable flight: “When we set the world altitude record for solar aircraft in September 1995. “NASA. “With NASA’s help. They understood the vagaries of it all and how hard it is up front to predict what’s going to happen. we knew the risks involved and took every . Pathfinder soared to 50. I also view it in terms of the stratospheric leap we’d made as an alliance. being a sophisticated customer. which cannot be identified during a program and that a flexible budget is needed to compensate for them. We had on the order of $3 million. and one for all. In September 1995. When you’re doing things you haven’t done before. Our goal was to fly into the stratosphere.’ That’s why.

(It had a 100-foot span but weighed less than 600 pounds. In the collision. They opened the hangar doors on three sides to give themselves more room to work. “In October. The guys who left the hangar doors . But when the airplane was in a hangar on the ground. The agency sent a management team to conduct an investigation into the incident. We were shocked out of this assumption fairly dramatically. “The next morning when I learned about the accident. We didn’t know whether NASA would give us the funding we needed to rebuild. the spars of two mid-panels on the Pathfinder were broken. a windstorm blew through the base. exceeding 30 knots. the hangar became a giant wind tunnel. where it would be parked in a hangar near two classified aircraft. and much of the solar array on these panels was destroyed. our crew chief told the attendant in charge that our plane was much more fragile than the others and that the attendant needed to be particularly careful when moving it or moving the other planes around it. The Pathfinder was blown across the hangar and got wrapped around the F-117 next to it. it was just as we had already determined. “During the night. When the report came in. He emphasized the Pathfinder’s susceptibility to wind because it was so large and light. we were asked to display the Pathfinder at the Edwards air show.86 Mastering the Leadership roLe in project ManageMent precaution possible. an Air Force crew moved the B-2 and the F-117 to a different hangar. The guy we had talked to about our plane wasn’t on duty and hadn’t talked to the people who were moving the planes. and we had no reason to doubt that he would do anything less than what we had asked. The day that we brought the Pathfinder to the hanger. the B-2 and the F-117. we assumed that it was inherently safe and that we didn’t need to worry about procedures for its safety. As they were working. All went well until the show ended. it occurred to me that we might be finished. and with the three doors open.) The hangar attendant seemed responsible.

the process made us stronger because it proved that we could count on each other in the worst of times as well as the best. we got to experiment with an improved structural design and turned out a better plane that was stronger and more durable.” Change of Venue In early 1997. We were able to do so because we had a team that refused to be broken by adversity and a knowledgeable and rational customer that understood the risks for flight-testing unique aircraft. an unexpected benefit of the accident was that we learned a tremendous amount about our plane. While rebuilding. Although the official explanation for doing so focused on the right weather conditions in conjunction with other operational requirements necessary for testing UAVs. and no one but us could be blamed for the accident. By remaining focused on learning from our mistakes. “Above all. we recognized that we needed improved procedures to protect the Pathfinder on the ground as much as in the air. it laid the foundation for pushing even higher into the stratosphere. an accident like that could have been catastrophic.S. Even more importantly. Pathfinder and the entire ERAST program were deployed to the U. Navy’s Pacific Missile Range Facility (PMRF) on the Hawaiian island of Kauai. Had we not been as successful a team as we were at that point. But for us. “Lucky for us. For many projects. we would not have recovered from the tremendous setback. there . we were able to secure funding from NASA to rebuild the airplane because we had already proven ourselves on our test flights and had demonstrated our ability to learn from our mistakes. 87 open didn’t know how fragile the Pathfinder was.

For example. and here we were bringing in unpiloted planes. the culture at Dryden didn’t value UAVs in the same way as the other aircrafts there. Dryden ‘hosted’ the program. NASA engineers weren’t directly involved. but we had to spend extra money to bring people in to support the activity. but at the same time the message wasn’t subtle. if not open resentment. At Dryden. Jenny explains: “Ironically. toward a UAV program competing for precious airtime and flight resources. and no one was available. I would schedule a meeting with Dryden personnel who needed to be there. Understandably.” . The attitude around Dryden was. We’d send a document for review. the harder it became to operate out of our home base at the Dryden Flight Research Center. Because of the nature of the Joint Sponsored Research Alliance.’ “Moreover. While it was just a matter of time before we left Dryden in any case. Dryden wouldn’t let us fly after 8. and it would never come back. there was some ambivalence. and we turned our attention to Hawaii. “The situation was exacerbated in other petty ways. it was disappointing. while the companies did the primary work. traditionally. the private companies handled most of the flight activities. ‘Want to cut us out of the picture? Then do it all yourself. test pilots figured prominently in the programs. just as we were starting to demonstrate success with the Pathfinder project and gaining more support at NASA Headquarters and in Congress for ERAST. the problems there accelerated our departure. we needed to schedule flights with the solar-powered Pathfinder at around 8 or 9 AM to take advantage of the sun and the wind conditions. We could fly later on weekends. Still. “Things never got openly hostile.88 Mastering the Leadership roLe in project ManageMent were additional reasons related to the ‘organizational environment’ that alienated Jenny Baer-Riedhart and her team. providing the facilities and some limited oversight and guidance.

Although he considered the support he gave us to be part of his job(s). 89 Ray Morgan describes the cultural barriers that they encountered in the process of moving their operations: “We’d chosen the island of Kauai because of the favorable conditions there for high-altitude flight tests. Dave Nekomoto. and he had quite an elaborate setup at his place for it. we had to overcome obstacles that were far more down to earth. Like many Kauaians we met. we devoured all the tasty food that he and his friends Vince and Johnny cooked for us in their giant (and I mean giant) woks. With Dave. Dave introduced us to the unique culture of Kauai and helped us ‘fit in’ and establish a good rapport with the local community. “Dave was well connected and helped smooth the way for us by cutting through red tape in dealing with the local authorities. Dave had more than one job. This was Dave’s way of relaxing at the end of the day. he made it clear that the real reason he did favors for us was because he liked us. if unintended. “The residents of Kauai share a natural apprehension about outsiders. He was a former executive officer at the Navy base where we were conducting the flight tests. including microphones. It helps to have someone willing to serve as your entrée into the community. Yes. To take advantage of these conditions. That was a main ingredient we found in all the business dealings we did on Kauai. Visitors need to be wary of making an inappropriate. was our man in Kauai. and acoustics that any garage band would kill . Not only that. Among other things. we endeared ourselves to him right away. that’s right—we sang. “Dave had—how shall I say it?—a thing for karaoke. It was a culture where your personality took you further than the size of your billfold. a fourth-generation Japanese-American born and raised in Hawaii. we sang with him. speakers. impression.

Dave Nekomoto was there. he suggested that we go over to his house to sing karaoke. Following the second day of meetings. But singing? I don’t sing. . ‘We have to go.” Jeffrey Bauer reiterates the importance of the karaoke ritual: “Hula Pie is a dessert at one of the restaurants near the hotel where we were all staying in Kauai. he must have owned the tracks for every song ever recorded. Even those who were painfully shy managed a few lines of ‘Happy Birthday. Plus. it was the project’s way of letting you know when you got off the plane that you weren’t walking into this tropical paradise without paying an entry fee first. more importantly. with the lyrics flashed across a television screen. It consists of an Oreo cookie crust. ‘And we’re going to sing. It was up to you to provide the vocals. “Singing karaoke was another must. Everyone on the project who came to Kauai had to eat a piece of this pie. but we managed to get everyone to sing something. macadamia nut ice cream. it showed that we weren’t afraid to risk embarrassment and we all trusted each other with our most precious possession—our egos. a hazing of sorts. and heaven help you if you were bashful. All you had to do was punch a button on a computer and the music started up. No one on the Pathfinder team had a Sinatra voice.90 Mastering the Leadership roLe in project ManageMent for. too.’ Jenny told me. and four inches of whipped cream. Jenny had made it clear to all of the team members that we needed to be sensitive to cultural differences when we were on the islands.’ “I traveled to Kauai for the first time to attend an alliance meeting and to scout out potential operating locations. Call it an initiation. “Anybody who was tight with Dave spent time with him at his house singing.’ It was all in good fun and. I spent my first two days there locked away in all-day meetings.

That way they could help you out. children. ‘I’m stuck. and we made friends with our Hawaiian and military hosts. Dave invited folks from the base who we worked with each day and who we never would have gotten to know personally otherwise. It brought the team together. we had a marketing strategy—we developed educational programs in the schools and put together displays at the local museum. People who absolutely refused to do a whole song were still expected to sing one verse. to stand up in front of his subordinates and look silly. that was a great exercise in team building. and to show that kind of vulnerability. but he could always turn to his colleague and say.’ They’d get a good laugh about it. but at least I don’t sing as bad as you. Without Dave’s karaoke parties.” Jenny Baer-Riedhart describes more about the social environment on the island: “In planning our marketing strategy on the islands—yes. But he was one of the project leaders. “What I found also was that it gave the project a history that people could cite whenever things were getting tense and we needed to remind ourselves of something fun. and other friends that had come over for a visit. but developing a social relationship certainly broke the ice quicker and formed a basis of trust. 91 “Anybody who was nervous about singing picked a song that everyone else knew. I cannot possibly overstate the importance of these karaoke nights at Dave’s place. Someone might be stuck on a problem. One guy from AeroVironment sang so badly that everyone was rolling on the floor laughing. and that was a nice break from dealing with the problem at hand. and the NASA public . We helped to write the lesson plans. along with spouses. we probably would have been accepted by the community eventually. “For many reasons. The whole NASA and AeroVironment team was there.

People on the island who worked at the hotels. “From Dave we learned invaluable things about the Kauaian culture—for instance. We jokingly called this event the ‘1.’ That kind of talk has a way of making things happen. and airline and car rental agencies that we used all got to know many of the team members.’ people were saying. which resulted in Hawaii’s entire congressional delegation sending a letter to NASA commending us on the success of our program. money that hadn’t been available before suddenly appeared at our doorstep. Working with the base commander and the PMRF public affairs office.’ and the name stuck. This was done on Dave Nekomoto’s advice. It was tremendously successful.92 Mastering the Leadership roLe in project ManageMent affairs staff led training workshops for the teachers in order to show them what we were doing so that they could share this information with their students. restaurants. and key parts of the PMRF support equipment.000 local schoolchildren to see the Pathfinder. its payloads. to put it immodestly. Not only that. ‘This Pathfinder is a good thing. When we had to make travel arrangements that were .000-Kid March. “Dave was also quick to let Hawaii’s political machine know what was going on with our project at PMRF. the NASA and AeroVironment team orchestrated an open house that brought in approximately 1. fell head over heels in love with us. and students and teachers from all across the state participated. ‘These people are doing something special. and he put us in direct touch with the right people at the college—it helped that his brother-inlaw was the Dean of Instruction there. the high regard that Kauaians have for those who educate their children. “The community. “We involved the Kauai Community College by hiring students to work for us at the Pacific Missile Range Facility (PMRF) and introducing them to advanced solar technology.

I went on marketing trips around the islands. Call it marketing or public relations. scientists could check the health of the plant life below. To help scientists understand the potential value of our data to them. Dougal Maclise reflects on how connections were made with scientists on the island toward this end: “Ostensibly. I tried to explain to them how chlorophyll reflects infrared more than it reflects green. by the time we left Kauai. we had probably spent 20 percent of our project time on it. the purpose of our project was to look at broad swaths of vegetation on Kauai from our high altitude perch on Pathfinder. this relationship proved invaluable. and how it showed the stress of the plants. 93 subject to change with events in our flight schedules. we think that just being smarter than someone else or having the best idea is all we need. we planned to take pictures of the forests to collect data on agriculture. I met scientists who had no idea about aerial photography and what it could do for them. We learned where to go to get a shot of a broken irrigation line. what the camera was capturing. but we understood that however it worked itself out was going to be critical to our success. “Many times in our projects.” Other activities of the project focused on testing microminiaturized sensors that can be carried out by the remotely operated aircrafts and that can serve the science community. That’s why we set aside money in our budget specifically for those kinds of activities. My other objective was to look for new ideas. no doubt. but whatever you call it. where an outbreak . For example. We came to Kauai not knowing how the human dimension would figure into our activities. but you’ve got to understand the human side of things. By the brightness of the infrared bands in the images we captured. That helps. new ways to use our information.

It led to some of the work that’s going on now.94 Mastering the Leadership roLe in project ManageMent of something was occurring. where there appeared to be an immature crop or anything else that someone asked to see. a small company run by a man named Paul McCready. he pored over them. He pointed out areas where he wanted me to take pictures as we were flying. Ray Morgan had to be in control of everything and everyone. and enable them to contribute and learn. when I showed him the pictures. Jeffrey Bauer and Dougal Maclise attributed his success in leading the team to his unique ability to focus on people. who began to see how useful aerial photography could be to them. It is only over time that his unique managerial style has evolved in response to his own experiences and self-development on the job: “In 1980. But this knack for inspiring mutual support didn’t always come naturally for Ray. I was hired to lead a project for AeroVironment. prior to becoming the kind of leader who fosters individual and project growth. I went for a ride with one in his helicopter and took pictures of crops to demonstrate the value of the project and to whet his appetite for wider-scale images available from Pathfinder. Within a day he was using the information we’d collected to fix broken irrigation lines.’ McCready . NASA. “Building on earlier visits to sugarcane producers. for example to the coffee growers. They stressed the strong trust and commitment that Ray was able to build within the entire team. and later on with the larger community on the island. including AeroVironment. In fact. treat them as equal.” People Matter the Most In sharing their impressions of Ray with great affection and admiration. who was known as the ‘Father of Human-Powered Flight. Word of that got around to other parts of the community. Later.

Solar power was still in its infancy. In some ways it was a stunt. and shelves . That was going to be my job. and nothing like this had ever been tried. but I took a leave of absence to join the project. something I never thought I’d get a chance to do. a genius inventor. “AeroVironment was an environmental consulting company. He wanted somebody to put together a team. do this project. and all of McCready’s projects with airplanes had been worked on outside the company. but he was not a project manager. we were going to design the airplane that we planned to call the Solar Challenger. ‘If I had another way to support my family. but if we could pull it off. To me it was the dream of a lifetime. I was working at Lockheed in Burbank. it might be seen as a groundbreaking event in the development of solar aviation technology. The first was a test bed called the Gossamer Penguin. To be on schedule. and we had a lot of ground to cover. which had a solar panel placed above the wing and aimed at the horizon so that we could fly and test it in the early morning sun. I had to demonstrate solar-powered flight on the Penguin by May. 95 was a visionary. There are hundreds of reasons why project managers accept an assignment. I didn’t have a building to work in—let alone people on the project. had lights installed. Solar power was one of the last frontiers in aviation.’ “We would develop two planes. and then disappear. California. It was pioneering in the truest sense of the word. I tried to do what I thought a good manager would do to get a project started—I found a building. “McCready had gotten Du Pont interested enough in his activities to sponsor a solar airplane that would fly from Paris to London. I would do this for free. By learning as much as we could from those tests. “When I was hired by McCready in January. I told McCready when we were negotiating my terms of employment. and we all have ones that are important to us.

telling me: ‘You can do that after the flight. the turbulence would make the plane less stable. Marshall. ‘Let’s get going. We crashed the plane with varying severity over and over.96 Mastering the Leadership roLe in project ManageMent built. I set up the same procedures we had used at Lockheed. I relied on what McCready told me and what I learned from the few people left over from his earlier programs. I let them guide me. Let’s get it in the air before the sun comes up too high. etc. “One April morning. we could get away with fewer solar cells on the airplane. cables not properly connected. No sooner had the plane begun to bank when it suddenly began spinning around the left tip. However. and then we wouldn’t be able to control the fragile airplane. With the crew following on bicycles. Marshall took off and began to fly our standard racetrack pattern. the boy fell out . Marshall climbed to about 25 feet above the concrete runway and began a left turn.’ He was right to be concerned about timing because as the sun rose higher. often for the same reasons—broken parts not found and repaired. Without a great deal of introspection. McCready pulled the Penguin out of the building. “The most alarming aspect of putting the plane in the air without more rigorous reviews and precautions was that—by McCready’s edict—the test pilot was his 12-year-old son.’ he told me. As the wings folded up and collapsed. and get something in the air. I was in the hangar at daybreak going through a checklist before we began the flight. “The first time we went out to flight test the Penguin. his dismissal of even the most minimal safety procedures would prove to be more costly in the long run. McCready reasoned that because his son only weighed 80 pounds. listening to what they said and—often against my better judgment—going along with it. The wing tip crumpled onto the ground with McCready’s son inside the cockpit. But McCready wasn’t happy.

to 100-hour weeks. I was killing myself. This was the sort of job that. McCready asked me to stay on and lead a new division of the company to develop solar applications. But on the inside. I wouldn’t have believed I could ever have. all types of flying things. We did about 25 projects over the next several years—incredible stuff. I thought I had to control everything. Never mind that his father wanted him to be the pilot—I should have known better. That was disaster number one. “I stayed on at AeroVironment. The kinds of projects I was working on were intoxicating. I said never again. I couldn’t pull myself away. I was working 80. I had people lined up outside my office waiting for decisions because I made them all. including props for the movie industry. England. 97 the side of the plane. 10 years earlier. never. I worked weekends. it looked like the ultimate job. “From the outside. and that was fortunate—because a carbon fiber spar from the left wing pierced the cockpit where his head had been only seconds earlier. It could have killed him. And thus began an eight-year period for me where I became exactly the kind of boss that I said I would never be. I was not only killing the morale of everyone I worked with. The tension was so palpable that I could feel it when I walked in. “Disaster number two was my reaction. “People came to work for me almost crying because they were so grateful to be there. Nothing happened without my approval. I don’t think I could have been any more traumatized had it been my own child in that airplane. I had almost killed a 12-year-old boy. ever again would that happen while I was managing a project. I couldn’t believe what I had done. and Du Pont loved it. We flew the Solar Challenger from Paris to Kent. and in two or three years they were . I never took vacations. I was a mess. Some days I felt so much stress in the morning driving to work that I almost threw up. I wouldn’t trust anybody to do anything.

whom I talked to about this. But as time went on. My job was to let them do it. I asked myself. I’m barely sleeping. ‘to make it possible for people to work with joy. and it was out of sheer desperation that I finally started to figure out that I needed to quit—or find a better way. ‘You don’t have time not to go to night school. Years of reflection followed.98 Mastering the Leadership roLe in project ManageMent burned out.’ “I took one class at UCLA. I said. the course led to a radical change in my attitude toward people. one of the few that I could call a friend. I continued for two more semesters. ‘The 14 points all have one aim. I had to start trusting and delegating and having confidence in their intelligence and integrity. At first.” wrote Deming. and though I was not able to implement many principles of Deming’s philosophy.’ And he said. I was probably as bad a manager as you could be. The guy that taught the class never told us anything. ‘Why can’t I get this out of my people?’ “Taking the first class at UCLA was just the beginning. I thought this was the biggest waste of money. The single biggest realization I had was that most people want to do good work. he just asked us questions. Most of what I had done as a manager was to kill the intrinsic motivation that people already had to do good work. He was demonstrating the power of using the brains of the people around you through the way he was teaching. it dawned on me: This was how the instructor worked. . That better way was about to present itself when I heard about night school classes being offered at UCLA on W. Edwards Deming’s revolutionary 14-point management system. ‘How can I go to night school? I don’t have time to go to night school. The essence of the philosophy was to learn from my people.’ “I had a longtime employee.

Dougal Maclise sums up his unique style by saying.’” It would appear that Ray does indeed practice what he preaches. “Whether one meets the optimist developer. The fear of lost control was almost unbearable. I might have reverted back to my old self if I hadn’t kept reminding myself of how miserable I had been. one always immediately feels that each one of his personalities is an authentic and sincere person. it was very tough at first and almost seemed like it was worse for a while. “By the time we joined the ERAST program and started developing the Pathfinder. the inquisitive engineer. “I learned to search for the right balance in everything. In fact. When I occasionally speak at schools. but more importantly. I learned that finding the right balance between systems and people is critical to being a good project manager. but it started me down the right road. I had wrestled with my worst demons and felt like I was not only a different man. His genuine spirit is contagious. if anything. I always stress that ‘I would encourage people to cooperate because that is the way the real world works. or the energetic cowboy. The key is collaboration through communication and trust. 99 “This new approach didn’t immediately solve my problems. You simply cannot not follow Ray. I had finally begun to be a leader and was leading my division in a transformation that enabled me to draw full value from all the brains of my workforce.” . teachers sometimes ask me what. What’s more. the experienced builder. The hardest thing for people to learn in the real world is to work together. I realized that people matter the most since they make the systems work. I would change about education. but a better manager.

I am proud to be part of a world-class team led by AeroVironment and supported by our Hawaiian counterparts.100 Mastering the Leadership roLe in project ManageMent Flight Party After the Pathfinder’s successful solar-powered. even janitors. and it turned out to be one of the biggest bashes they’d ever seen on the island.” Ray Morgan was looking to reward his team and his Hawaiian friends by throwing a big bash: “After a successful flight test. remotely piloted 14-hour flight to an altitude of 71. The project manager buys the refreshments. school kids. We invited everyone we could. we decided to throw a different kind of party. The reigning Miss Hawaii even showed up and sang for us. and they brought anyone from the base who wanted to come—electricians. After Pathfinder set the world altitude record on July 7. They never had a celebration like this before and were glad to help out with things like cooking. and we had flyers printed up and sent out special invitations. the team had cause to celebrate. and that is how you pay back your team. AeroVironment had t-shirts made that said ‘Thank You’ in Hawaiian. usually a couple of kegs of beer. our community of friends and supporters. “People who worked with us from the Pacific Missile Range Facility were there. I had NASA stickers and ERAST stickers to give to people. We have set a very high standard for others in our ERAST team to follow. “Pathfinder’s performance to date has exceeded our wildest expectations. “We held the party in a park. Even teachers. it’s a tradition to throw a party. As Jennifer Baer-Riedhart declared. 1997. Our team performed without flaw and way ahead of schedule. . Dave Nekomoto brought a karaoke machine. telephone repairmen. There was singing and hula dancing.530 feet above Kauai in July 1997. and community college students came.

The most memorable thing about the party for me was how happy they were that we had done this for them. the support of the Kauaians who helped make it possible must never be forgotten. but it was also just to say thank you to the community for all the help they gave us. every Kauaian knew about Pathfinder and what we were trying to accomplish— and. The way I see it. “Cynics will look at our public relations activities on Kauai and say that all we did was woo the natives in order to get what we wanted from them. A lot of factors contributed to our success in the skies above Kauai. We enjoyed sharing our accomplishments with everyone who wanted to be part of the team. they were behind us one hundred percent. if they were assets. So we wanted everyone to feel like they were part of the team. we had friends on the island. “None of us can do much alone. People are the most important part of any operation. One very important factor was that the people of Kauai felt invested in our success and wanted to do whatever they could to help us reach our goals. Bottom line. Whatever advancements derive from our work on Pathfinder. And they did. 101 “The party started at three o’clock in the afternoon and didn’t end until well past midnight. For those inclined to see the world this way. too. more importantly. By the time we left. it was to celebrate the altitude record. you can bet that they make little distinction between a friend and an asset.” . the world record belonged to all of us. that’s beside the point. and it is only with the help of others that we do great things. Ostensibly.

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All of the cranes were about 40 meters high. issued a public tender for the overland transfer of these giant cranes. while taking into account the limitations of the existing roads and bridges along the way. The first stage was to involve disassembling each crane into approximately 70 transportable parts that would be transported overland on giant trucks. The tender requirements were based on the vast knowledge accumulated by the Ports Authority and by local Israeli contractors as well as on their past experience in overland transfers.4 Transferring Harbor Cranes: Delivering a Bold Idea Through Meticulous Preparations and Quick Responsiveness by Alexander Laufer. The relocation activity was described in detail in the tender. the Ports Authority. meticulous coordination was required between the contractor and the Israel National Roads Company (reinforcement of bridges and construction of bypasses). Before beginning the land transportation project. Zvi Ziklik. the Police department (coordination of 103 . following a comprehensive program to streamline the Israeli ports. four large harbor cranes were designated for relocation: two cranes (weighing 400 tons each) from Haifa Port to Hakishon Port and two cranes (weighing 250 tons each) from Hakishon to Haifa. The client. and Jeffrey Russell The Entrepreneurial Phase In 1996.

A thorough inspection of the cranes and their components by the Belgian crane manufacturer. or about one year for the entire operation. and so on).104 Mastering the Leadership roLe in project ManageMent traffic and parking). As he explains: . the client expected the relocation cost of each crane to range between $3. In addition. Ofer Klein. other relevant authorities. including the design. as well as inspections by the safety and licensing agencies. a private family-owned company. The client estimated the time period for the relocation of each crane to be about three months. One of the six companies participating in the tender was Mifram. Six companies specializing in the execution of similar works acquired the tender documents. After the arrival of the crane parts at their destination. Mifram had an impressive track record of developing and producing new and innovative industrial products. would be required for approval of the cranes’ return to service. the CEO of Mifram. Since its establishment in 1962. the Ports Authority management (timing. the firm had developed expertise ranging over a broad industrial spectrum. the reassembly of each crane was to begin. manufacture. appointed a think tank to identify possible alternatives to the usual method of relocation.5 and $4 million and. including reconditioning/replacing all of the parts that could no longer be used after their disassembly. staging areas. the Electric Corporation (disconnection of power lines). Based on data from previous projects. The expectations of the client regarding price were based on the cost of past projects and were known to all of the leading and experienced crane relocation companies. and transportation of heavy equipment and the construction of unique structures and industrial plants. Only after these inspections were completed would the cranes receive licensing and authorization to operate again. reserved a budget of approximately $16 million for the relocation of the four cranes. therefore. prevention of interference with ongoing activity. and so forth.

105 “This was going to be a competition in a world of equals. The team began to examine this original and challenging idea. I preferred to wait until I was convinced that . if at all. The idea was to transfer the crane from the quay directly onto a giant barge (roll-in). the team reached the conclusion that the solution seemed feasible. and unload the crane by transferring it from the barge to the quay (roll-out) on the tracks that are already installed at the destination port.” Amos reflects on the financial risk involved: “I estimated the cost of preparing such an offer at approximately $300. transport it by sea using a special tugboat to tow the barge.” Ofer’s brother and vice president of production. Amos Klein. I saw large barges towing a huge drilling rig in the open sea. so the differences in prices between the bids were expected to be small and the profitability minimal. which. The team began investigating the feasibility of the proposed solution. we had to change the game. to the best of my knowledge. He describes his innovative idea: “On a visit I made several years ago to the oil fields in the North Sea.000. To have an advantage in the competition. Mifram’s management gave the ‘goahead’ to invest in further examination of this unique solution. All of the other competitors were familiar with the overland method of transfer and capable of doing it efficiently. was appointed as head of the think tank. I proposed to the team that we try to adopt a similar method in our case as well. had not yet been tried elsewhere in the world for these kinds of tall cranes that have a very high center of gravity and a very narrow base and can be destabilized rather easily. I understood immediately that if we wanted to win and also make a profit from this large tender. After a week of inquiries with several external experts. then we had to find a solution that was different from the conventional solution. which would go down the drain if we failed to win the tender.

in which we requested full cooperation in the preparation of the tender. namely to prepare a proposal. during which it became clear that the chances of successfully executing this innovative idea were good. We sent each of those companies a letter of intent.” Ofer further elaborates on the process: “With the help of Yitzhak. such as a meteorologist. it seemed critical to cope with marinerelated issues. Only after a fortnight of intensive examinations.” .” The decision was also made to bring Yitzhak. and so forth. did we decide to move on to the next stage.106 Mastering the Leadership roLe in project ManageMent the proposed method was indeed feasible. we located several companies that specialize in the transportation of oil drilling equipment in the North Sea. a marine structural designer. maritime insurance and legal experts. without yet revealing any details about the specific tender. Several European companies expressed interest in the matter and asked for additional technical details before giving their final consent. Amos underscores the importance of this decision: “At this early stage. but we did not yet have those technical details. and so on. We came to the conclusion that a marine engineer who was familiar with the subject should be added to the team immediately to help prepare the tender. knowledge of the civil and military activity in the Israeli ports.000 in preliminary tests. on board. as a kind of go/no-go test. the intensity and direction of the ocean currents. We decided to risk $50. such as the wave pattern in the eastern basin of the Mediterranean and its effect on the barge’s stability. we focused on identifying experts in the relevant areas. “In parallel. These consultants were asked to perform initial reviews of the proposed idea and give their feedback. a marine engineer.

who was in charge of coordinating the activities of all the designers and consultants.000 tons. a multi-wheeled cart was required to minimize the local load on each wheel.000 a day. a special cart would be needed to transport the crane from its location on the track on one quay onto the barge and from the barge to the quay at the destination port. This kind of a cart was located in Germany. It had 1. can successfully predict the intensity and direction of the next roll and balance the barge in time accordingly. Hence. 107 Yitzhak. especially that with irregular dimensions. Using an appropriate algorithm and based on previous rolling patterns. The costs for the tugboat and the barge. the computer. were estimated at $150. from rolling with the waves. The initial calculations done by the designers revealed that the quay was not built to withstand heavy local loads such as that expected to be created by the crane’s weight upon being transferred to the quay over the wheels of the cart. capable of carrying a load of some 3. Most importantly.” In addition. which is programmed in advance according to the various scenarios. The barge is equipped with a special computer-controlled gyro system. any backup capacity of alternative equipment that might be required in case of malfunction was typically difficult to obtain in the existing market. the tugboat’s cable system must create a continuous and uniform pull. with workdays counted from the day of the vessels’ departure from the Italian port until their return. the appropriate equipment was located in an Italian company specializing in towing marine vessels and large-scale marine projects. After approaching several European companies. Finally. with maximum neutralization of various forces that result from the independent and separate motion on the sea of the connected tugboat and barge. each of which was computer-controlled so as to inflate . which activates 12 pumps that pump seawater into the various tanks on the barge in order to balance it. outlines the planned approach: “The main challenge when dealing with a loaded barge in the open seas is to prevent the cargo.200 wheels.

We were concerned that proposing a solution so different from the tender conditions might lead to our immediate disqualification. the success of the bid depended on total compartmentalization of its preparation process and on meticulously safeguarding against any leakage of information about the proposed method. All of the technical and contractual documents were designed to deal only with the overland solution. each of the participants in the proposal preparation process was required to sign a confidentiality agreement. His experience in the marine transportation of irregular cargo contributed significantly to pricing of the proposal and identification of the project’s potential risks. which included severe sanctions against anyone who might breach it. the client was not even aware of the possibility that transfer could be done any other way than by land. and we were well aware of his sensitivity to changes in the tender conditions.000 a day. The cost of the cart was approximately $30. as was customary. As Ofer explains: “We had executed many projects for this client. Thus. with workdays counted from the day of the ship’s departure from the German port until its return. also joined the team. Despite all these preparations. no accommodations were made for this option as part of the tender documents. . who was responsible for supplying the barge and the tugboat. Therefore. assuming that proper technical support and attractive cost estimates were provided.108 Mastering the Leadership roLe in project ManageMent or deflate in order to maintain leveling of the cart. Any premature disclosure of information could have been devastating for Mifram. We were advised that the client would find it difficult to object to our innovative solution. A representative of the Italian contractor. because the client might have rejected the method out of hand.” Because the proposed solution was so innovative. so we decided to seek legal advice on the contractual aspects of our unusual proposal.

” One last decision remained prior to submitting the proposal: the tender price. We invested great efforts in trying to identify any approaches made by the competitors to large contractors and suppliers in Israel and abroad. 109 Likewise. which prepared a proposal for the land transportation option. rather. and now we were trying to sell our idea and our confidence to an investor. we developed a new idea to address it. if the price difference was too small. the . we went one step further. whereas the estimated cost of the marine alternative was only about $1 million per crane. prefer the proven and safe solution over the never-before-tried proposal. who might. separate from the other team. We identified an opportunity. and his fear of putting himself at increased risk vis-a-vis the client. We established an additional team. As Ofer emphasizes: “It was very important for us to know whether or not the competitors had uncovered our intentions. The fear of a future lawsuit due to excessive profits was also a significant consideration. Mifram took all possible steps to prevent leaks of information about the plan to the competition in order to ward off attempts by any other companies to adopt the same idea. Since many of our competitors also resort to ‘business intelligence’ for large contracts. we were confident that we knew how to convert our idea into successful results. Ofer shares his final considerations: “I realized that we were not like a typical contractor submitting a bid to a client. Ofer deliberated between his natural desire to maximize his profits and to quote a price closer to the “conventional” $4 million. we were like an entrepreneur. This decision turned out to be the most difficult one. Since this ‘investor’ is a public entity and thus its primary concern is to minimize risks. and in a controlled manner we released information about the work of this team. The “conventional” price of the overland solution was about $4 million per crane.

“So. including safety. Amos recalls: “Several days later. as a public entity. I felt that developing the new idea was crucial to our success.” Upon opening the bids. The Committee decided to reject it out of hand. the Tenders Committee saw that five of the six proposals indeed were within the estimated range.110 Mastering the Leadership roLe in project ManageMent price should be very attractive.” But Mifram had already anticipated this reaction. undoubtedly. and was very attractive to the client. and we were not ready to give up. as Ofer describes: “We were prepared for such a scenario. but selling it would probably be our most challenging hurdle. as well as a commitment to shorten the relocation time for each crane from three months to only one month. Following the Tenders Committee’s notification. We also added an accompanying letter to our proposal in which we provided reassurance that despite the low bid price. It was. The Ports Authority would have to explain to the High Court of Justice their rejection of a bid that . Ofer and I were summoned by the Tenders Committee. it had been concluded that the method we were proposing was unreasonable. finally I decided to give the sum of $2 million as the tender price for the relocation of each crane. and that Mifram’s surprising bid was approximately fifty percent lower. a most attractive proposal for both client and bidder. This price guaranteed a fair profit. The Chairman of the Committee informed us that after an in-depth examination. exercising its contractual right not to prefer the least expensive bid in this case. It was clear to us that the client. was not entitled to so hastily reject an offer that was significantly cheaper than all the other contenders. we would meet all of the tender conditions. so that the public entity would not have a choice but to ‘invest’ in our idea. covered all our risks. we met and brainstormed with the company’s legal advisors.

The Authority’s legal advisor recommended to the Tenders Committee members that at this stage. and the Italian marine contractor was flown in for the occasion. which according to the manufacturer’s definition were not suited to be tossed around by the waves. the Ports Authority’s professionals opened the meeting by expressing their grave concern about potential damage to the cranes. As expected. I got up and placed the full cup of coffee I had in my hand on the tray and then I carefully lifted the tray. in the absence of the maritime risk. I explained to the client that this was exactly the essence of the action we would be taking: The cranes would appear to be on solid ground all the time. The Tenders Committee notified Mifram that after reconsidering all of the arguments. they refrain from rejecting the bid out of hand. The entire technical consulting team that had helped prepare the proposal was summoned for the hearing. . The drink in the cup did not move.’ and from this point onward. Ofer responded by way of example: “I understood the point that seemed critical to the client and chose to respond immediately. it had decided to grant the bidder a hearing before the client’s senior legal and technical team in order to present it with the proposed solution.” At this critical point in time. 111 met all of the tender conditions and that was submitted by a proven contractor. then he.” At the end of the hearing. the Ports Authority’s chief engineer concluded that if the crane manufacturer was willing to take the risk upon itself and approve the marine transfer. would remove his objections. the client. and instead request additional clarifications regarding the proposal. Mifram decided to concentrate its efforts on the legal arguments vis-a-vis the Ports Authority management rather than on the engineering/technical arguments vis-a-vis the Tenders Committee. This tangible demonstration ‘broke the ice. our proposal was not treated as fanciful and illogical again. This approach proved to be successful. Indeed.

including reinforcing and securing the crane on the barge during the sea voyage. It had to be ascertained that the crane would not actually be affected by any change during its marine transfer. as if it were on solid ground rather than on the sea.” A series of meetings in Belgium with the crane manufacturer’s technical and administrative team was scheduled in order to obtain approval for the proposed plan. with the crane manufacturer convinced about the safety of the marine transfer.112 Mastering the Leadership roLe in project ManageMent the proposed method seemed preferable in all other respects. specifically that the extent of jolting would be in accordance with the Belgian manufacturer’s guidelines and would not in any case exceed the permitted limit for land activity. It was important to us to make it clear to the crane manufacturer that our primary task was to guarantee the crane’s perfect stability throughout the entire process. In Yitzhak’s estimation. The client. therefore. They agreed to send the client a letter . would have done the same.” But there was much to be done in that one-week grace period granted by the client. The meetings lasted two days and ended successfully. especially in light of the fact that this adventuresome idea had never been tried before. We planned to conform to all of the manufacturer’s requirements. Ofer was also sympathetic to the client’s concerns: “I understood that the client was willing to listen to us and that it was now up to only us to land the job. I. agreed to give Mifram a one-week extension during which it was required to submit additional technical data. including certificates from the crane manufacturer and other drawings and calculations guaranteeing that all risks to the cranes and quays had been taken into account and that the transfer of the cranes by sea would not affect their performance or void the manufacturer’s warranty. these terms were quite reasonable: “The client’s requirements seemed logical to me. and to build in safety factors that were three times higher than the calculated requirements for overland transport. too.

when the workload in the ports would be significantly reduced.” It should be stressed that although Ofer and Amos might have been taking a real risk. Ofer recalls: “Before we entered the meeting with the Committee. they relayed their impressions and recommendations to the Tenders Committee accordingly. was an attractive prospect for the port managers. After hearing the persuasive arguments. who was entrusted with the task of making the final decision on whether or not to approve the method. Beyond his personal concerns about putting his career on the line.’ The engineer’s sincere words moved me. were presented to the Ports Authority’s chief engineer. there was no apparent reason to prevent the marine transfer of the cranes. including the letter from the Belgian manufacturer. I ask that you do not disappoint me. they were also going to benefit directly. All of the required documents.” Ofer decided at this stage not to limit his attention to the engineering issues. and confirming that the warranties on the cranes would not be void following such a move. As an entrepreneur aiming to improve his chances of “selling his idea. whereas the chief engineer was a public servant who did not stand to gain any direct benefits from taking such risks. the chief engineer summoned me to a one-on-one meeting. and I made a commitment to him to make every effort to ensure that the project succeeds. He chose to mount a parallel campaign with the Haifa and HaKishon port managements. the chief engineer’s . The possibility of considerably shortening the duration of crane downtime and concentrating the work during the holiday season. He indicated to me that this was his last project before retiring from the Ports Authority and that failure of the project would cast a long shadow over his entire career: ‘I believe in the method you are proposing and I expect your personal commitment to its success. 113 specifying that in light of the material presented. for whom the shutdown of the cranes’ operation would have had a critical impact on operations.

Amos took the role of project manager: “While it was not clear when the actual transportation would start and we assumed we had about two months for detailed preparations. it was very clear. Partial success would be a disaster for the client and for us. This experience guided me in selecting the execution strategy—meticulous preparations coupled with enhanced redundancies—and was also very handy in quickly identifying the right experts. In all likelihood. the Ports Authority was about to issue a large tender for the supply of new cranes. At that time. the overall objective of all our preparatory activities was also very clear: Reduce risk and eliminate it to the greatest extent possible. he was now ready to approve the transfer method suggested by Mifram. The Ports Authority’s chief engineer proceeded to inform the Tenders Committee that after reviewing all of the documents he had received. The Risk Reduction Phase Upon receiving the official notification about being awarded the job. About a month later. “Although the specific task at hand was completely outside my area of expertise. would have probably complied with any request made by the Authority’s engineer. that this project had only two possible outcomes: a complete success or a complete failure. I had already acquired rich experience in leading ‘out-of-the-box’ projects. who was coveting that tender.114 Mastering the Leadership roLe in project ManageMent willingness to support the plan was praiseworthy for another reason as well. all along. the Tenders Committee issued an approval of Mifram as the winning contractor. and the Belgian manufacturer. a few of them from . Accordingly. even the slightest hint on the part of the chief engineer would have sufficed for the Belgian manufacturer to reject Mifram’s request out of hand.

For example. we started by testing our models in sophisticated labs. and design. such as nails and screws. For other aspects. we followed the typical design engineering patterns of information collection. as well as in adopting an appropriate decision-making process. the Faculty of Aeronautics at the Technion. analysis.” There were many other issues that had to be addressed by Amos and his team in order to minimize risk. where knowledge was completely missing. The magnet was designed to prevent punctured wheels by collecting all of the sharp metal objects. In some cases. I relied almost blindly on the input of the experts. We examined even very extreme scenarios. was commissioned to test a computer model of the crane/barge system in a wind tunnel on a dynamic platform in order to calculate the forces expected to act on the crane during the sea voyage. a powerful magnetic surface was mounted on the front of the overland vehicle. the Israel Institute of Technology. the design was preceded by brainstorming meetings. either because of the subject or the expert. and to determine the required harnessing. such as the capsizing of the crane on the quay during the overland transfer. A steel bridge was designed and manufactured to connect the quay to the center of the barge to stabilize it and keep the crane’s load uniformly distributed over the barge surface when loading or unloading it. I decided to seek a second opinion. where extreme scenarios were examined.200 wheels to minimize the load on the quay. the thickness of the tension cables had to be two and a half times that . which might damage anchored ships and shut down the quay for an extended period of time. scattered along the route. For example. but in most cases. Finally. Another safety issue was preventing the barge from swaying dangerously due to the transfer of the crane from the quay to the barge and back. For other. “For some aspects. with the swaying of the waves. more complicated aspects. which was equipped with a drive system that included about 1. 115 abroad.

000 tons). and daily changes of work clothes. such as foremen. A project manager was specially appointed to take care of all the administrative issues on site. and so on). for all critical systems. Amos decided to triple the amount of designated equipment (such as welding apparatuses. Amos even decided to purchase new tools and clothing labeled with the name of the project so as to enhance the identification of the workers with the project. and equipment operators. including hot meals. as Amos illustrated: “I decided to invite an expert in ship building and asked him to examine the tugboat and the barge very thoroughly. fueling. including the number of wheels (1.” Moreover. team leaders. training program for the different trades. The project workforce included 190 workers. In more than a few cases. the best available people in the market were hired at a premium cost. Indeed. but comprehensive.200) and the capacity of the barge (3. and maintenance crews). cables. work crews were reinforced. and an additional backup crew was added to each shift.116 Mastering the Leadership roLe in project ManageMent required by the calculations in order to satisfy Lloyd’s. generators. cranes. Amos started focusing on the people side of it as well. In order to provide immediate solutions for any mishap related to the critical issue of harnessing the crane to the barge during the sea voyage. Special attention was given to the development of an accelerated. lavatories and showers on the barge. Extremely rigorous tests were also conducted. as if I was about to purchase this equipment. . the maritime insurance company. 40 foreign workers (tugboat and barge operational crews). comprised of 120 Mifram employees. welders. While still refining the “hardware” side of the mission. Strong emphasis was placed on selecting the right people for key positions. and 30 employees of local subcontractors (heavy equipment operators. whose job it was to approve the harnessing of the crane to the barge before each departure from port. transportation. the safety requirements embraced were much higher than those dictated by the direct calculations.


Accurate, reduced-size models of the crane, the barge, and the cart, including electrical motors, were built to train the workers and drill them on the loading and unloading processes, with an emphasis on safety. An extremely detailed plan, with about 300 specific activities, was prepared for each sea voyage. Important procedures were not only described in words, but were also drawn on large sheets of paper in order to ensure that all concerned would understand them and adhere to them. Various safety checklists were also prepared and played a central part in the training sessions, later being distributed to all key functionaries. While Amos was leading the preparatory activities, his brother, Ofer, had developed better ties with the Ports Authority’s chief engineer. As Ofer explained: “From the moment we received the notice to proceed, I took it upon myself to gain and maintain the trust of the chief engineer. Therefore, all relevant information that was available to us was forwarded freely and transparently to the chief engineer. I felt that this went a long way toward strengthening the trust between the two of us. I really don’t believe that the first surprise we encountered in this project had anything to do with the trust that had developed, but at the same time it definitely did not hurt.” That first surprise was an out-of-the-blue request from the Ports Authority to deliver two very large cranes—this time from Haifa to Ashdod. Both cranes weighed 1,100 tons each and stood about 85 meters high. Only a few minor changes were necessary to accommodate these two additional cranes. The most significant change was to prepare alternative mooring places along the way, because the distance between Haifa and Ashdod is about 130 kilometers, as opposed to the 7-kilometer distance between Haifa and Hakishon. This change would have only a marginal cost and time impact, and the formal contractual agreement with the Ports Authority was arranged quickly—a big boon for Mifram.


Mastering the Leadership roLe in project ManageMent

The Constant Vigilance Phase
The first sea voyage with one of the big cranes went flawlessly according to plan until the tugboat and the barge were about to enter the port of Ashdod. Without any advance warning to the captain, the tugboat was not allowed to enter the port, and it was left waiting at the end of the line. Because the barge must be constantly on the move to minimize oscillations, this delay was risky. Following a series of urgent phone calls to the Ashdod Port management, which took about thirty minutes, the tugboat was finally given permission to enter the port. It turned out that the very recent addition of the two cranes from Haifa to Ashdod in the scope of the work had not been coordinated with the workers in Ashdod. A couple of hours later, representatives of the Ashdod Port’s union and management were meeting to discuss the long-term development plans for the port. In the wake of the incident that had just occurred, they also made one short-term decision: to allow the tugboat to enter the port without any delay the next time it arrives. By the time the crane was unloaded safely and placed in its new location in Ashdod, everybody was extremely pleased, both on the side of the client and the contractor. That is, except for Ofer: “The full success of the first relocation actually worried me a lot. I was afraid of the ‘driver with one arm hanging out the window’ syndrome. Over-complacency on the part of the workers might impair their alertness and readiness to cope with mishaps. I collected all of the workers and commended them on a job well done, while reiterating and warning about the high risk inherent in each relocation: ‘Each delivery is a new task that depends to a great extent on factors over which we have limited control, and so we must not delude ourselves that the success of one relocation necessarily means success of the next.’” One of the brothers, Amos or Ofer, was constantly with the workforce throughout the entire operation. They were closely involved in


this 24/7 operation and worked on it in shifts, including weekends and holidays, staying together with the workers and even eating with them. As Ofer underscored: “This was our norm for all the special projects we carried out, and our people expected it. We believed that this way we can learn quickly about changes and react in a timely manner, and not less importantly, we can naturally infect the entire workforce with our passion and energy. We promised large bonuses to the workers, but we believed that the role model approach is a more effective motivator. Our work philosophy was that the workers should stay focused on their task, religiously adhering to their procedures, while they were expected to ‘raise a flag’ if they observed a change in their surroundings. It was the responsibility of the various managers to react quickly, to adjust the procedures, or to improvise a new solution.” In addition to this process of identifying changes, each step in the transfer of every crane was continuously documented and photographed from different angles (land, sea, and air) in order to identify any possible mishap in advance, to implement lessons from each voyage to the next, and to minimize risks. All of the execution stages, the processes implemented, and the work and equipment invested were documented in a detailed logbook in order to draw immediate lessons from one relocation to the next. Prior to each sea voyage, all vessels and designated equipment were meticulously inspected according to an inspection guidelines document (“Readiness for Towing”), prepared by the marine engineer in collaboration with the captain of the tugboat. This included, among other things, a thorough inspection of harnessing and connections between the crane and the barge, the qualifications of the professional crew, and the validity of the licenses and certificates for all of the auxiliary equipment. All planning aside, Ofer was realistic about expecting the unexpected: “Although we were quite confident that we had prepared


Mastering the Leadership roLe in project ManageMent

ourselves meticulously in the best way possible for this unique and risky operation, we were still sure that we would encounter surprises. So we had to be constantly vigilant.” And there was, indeed, no lack of surprises. Amos shares one of the emergencies they had to cope with: “On the morning before Yom Kippur, the holiest and most solemn day of the year for the Jews, the barge was in Haifa Port with the second crane destined for Ashdod Port on it. It was obvious to me that we would not make it in time to unload the crane before Yom Kippur and return to port in time. Due to the shortage of mooring place at Haifa Port, we were instructed to sail the barge to the shallow waters of Hakishon Port and let it wait there until the end of the holiday, with the crane on it.” Waiting in HaKishon Port for 48 hours would require “sinking” the loaded barge until close to the sea bed in order to increase its stability. After all of the arrangements were completed, however, the marine engineer recalled a past incident in which a loaded tanker had capsized in Hakishon Port under similar circumstances due to “suction forces” that the muddy soil of the port had exerted on the bottom of the ship. Ofer and Amos realized that they could not afford to take any chances and must change the previous decision. They went ahead and requested approval, after all, to moor in the Haifa Port for 48 hours. This change in plans on the eve of the holiday, when all of the approving entities were already off duty, was practically impossible. The port master refused to approve the request. There was indeed a problem, because the designated quay was completely full of passenger ships that were anchored in Israel for the duration of the holiday. In the final hour, arrangements were made for mooring of the loaded barge in the Haifa Port, conditional upon Mifram’s agreement to bear the cost of moving and coordinating the mooring of several ships on the quay. Only Ofer’s personal involvement and intensive


action vis-a-vis the person responsible for the moorings in the port yielded this last-minute solution. Following the holiday, the voyage to Ashdod continued, though many small disturbances were encountered along the way. Despite their constant attention to meteorological conditions, with rerouting of the tugboat as deemed necessary, on this specific trip they had to cope with changes even after they had left the port in Haifa. They had not one, but two false starts when they were warned that the sea was expected to be squally. First, the tugboat captain decided to return and go back to Haifa, where they had to wait for the sea to quiet down, even though it delayed the trip by two days. During their second attempt, they were warned again of a squally sea, and this time the captain decided to moor in the alternative harborage in Hadera, which was prepared in advance for such an event. Amos recalls: “Due to the high waves, the barge could not maintain its stability, the head of the crane was making large circles in the air, and everything was noisy and squeaky. I have to admit it was quite scary. During those moments, prior to entering the harbor, we felt very thankful for the extra harnessing we had installed.” Besides the squally conditions at sea, the barge was getting jostled around even while moored in the port. Small military vessels that were accustomed to exiting and entering the ports at high speed created waves in their wake that jostled the barge, particularly during the critical periods when the crane was being loaded onto the barge until its final harnessing. Again, Ofer was proactive in meeting with the Navy commanders and was able to coordinate the movement of military vessels by day and night so that they would pass by the barge in a slow and controlled manner. However, they had to cope with major mishaps as well. During the second transfer, a severe malfunction occurred that compromised human life and threatened to shut down the entire project. One night, while attaching the crane’s harnessing cables to the barge, a foreign ship hit the harnessing cable that connected the barge to the quay and

as well as the magnitude of the client’s neglect. such as when the Italian contractor’s representative approached Ofer and demanded advance cash payment prior to the transport.or coordination-related. The method of securing the barge to the quay was also changed to prevent damage to the cables by any random ship. The lessons from the laceration of the cable by the foreign ship were implemented in the subsequent loading by using observers and enhanced lighting to secure the entire loading area. ‘No More Mr. When we understood the severity of the event and its implications.122 Mastering the Leadership roLe in project ManageMent disconnected it. which stipulated that payment would be made after each relocation via bank transfer to the Italians’ bank account. A debriefing was performed shortly after the completion of each relocation operation. The tugboat captain and a Mifram portable crane operator saved the day by using the portable crane. with the lessons used immediately as a basis for analysis and planning of the next transport. to the extent that it was feared that it would crash against the quay and cause the crane to collapse onto adjacent vessels. we had been very nice to the client and to the Haifa Port management. Some were financially driven. Finally.’” Not all of the problems were weather. Amos did not mince words on this point: “Up until that event. This caused the barge to roll heavily. we immediately said. to secure the end of the cable and pull it to the quay. Ofer was stunned by their request: “The Italians’ demand astonished me. We had already . The event was apparently caused by the failure of the port management to inform the captain of the foreign ship that the crane was being loaded onto the barge. Their resourcefulness not only saved the operation. but also prevented a major disaster. Nice Guy. closer coordination with the port authorities was also executed prior to each transport. which by chance was on the quay with its arm open and ready to load equipment onto the barge. An alternative harnessing cable had to be transferred immediately from the barge to the quay and attached to the mooring installation on the shore. This was contrary to the agreement.

The captain seemed embarrassed in light of the special relationship that had developed between himself and Ofer. giving “work safety” as the reason. transporting the crane using the overland vehicle took about 5 hours instead of only 45 minutes. an offer that apparently presented an excellent business opportunity for the Italians. he instructed his workers to take possession of all the tugboat’s and barge’s loading and mooring equipment. . At the same time. I could not have done it at that moment because all the banks are closed at night and it was impossible to raise the required amount of money in cash. Only after harsh talks between Ofer and the tugboat captain did the latter agree to instruct the crew to return to normal work pace. but he felt obliged to obey the instructions of his superiors in the company. 123 completed two successful marine transfers and had paid the Italians what they were due without any problem.” The captain was instructed by his employer to explain the termination of work with Mifram by saying that towing of the barge was dangerous and that according to maritime law.” The Italians decided to stage a “strike” and deliberately slowed down the execution process. as in previous cases. the tugboat captain haphazardly informed me that he had received orders from the mother company in Italy ‘to drop everything and set sail that same night’ for Africa. Even if I had wanted to pay. he could not be forced to take the risk. without which the tugboat could not execute its task in Africa. where his urgent presence was required in order to extricate a ship. The captain suggested that Ofer speak directly with the CEO of the Italian company and inform him that he intended to involve the Italian embassy in Israel and the Haifa Port management in order to prevent the tugboat from leaving the country. Ofer asked the Haifa Port authorities not to approve the tugboat’s exit from the port. But the standoff was not over yet: “After this relocation was completed. This time.

Regarding the flat organizational structure. The client saved about 50 percent of his budget (direct cost) and additional sums due to the shorter shutdown time of the cranes and the quays. while Ofer adds building trust and leadership. it enables them to tailor their decisions to the context. for example. and the norm of working closely with their staff in the field contributed to the success of the project. Both Ofer and Amos agree that their rich experiences with “outof-the-box” projects. in particular leading the client. if needed. and eventually a different tugboat was sent from Italy to Africa to execute the other mission. but not least. their ability to make decisions and quickly implement them is enhanced. the workers received high premiums for their outstanding performance. they pointed out that when the heads of the organization are also the heads of the project. to pay him twice the going rate. their company’s flat organizational structure. both Amos and Ofer agree that the most crucial weapon they brought to a dynamic environment was the fact that they complemented each other and created a dynamic harmony. the quality of the people they recruited and developed throughout the years. to hire a consultant and. Even more importantly. .124 Mastering the Leadership roLe in project ManageMent The threats and actions taken were effective. Amos adds to this list boldness and systematic planning. Last. The crane relocation project was successfully completed. The entire project took only about four weeks and was cause for celebration by all parties. The contractor made a higher profit than he had originally planned because of the significant expansion of the work at a relatively low marginal cost. Finally.

5 A Successful Downsizing: Developing a Culture of Trust and Responsibility by Alexander Laufer. A lot of these people had been on the program for the full 20 years it had existed. military personnel. The program was rife with problems when I arrived.” 125 . and many thought they were going to stay there until they retired. Dan Ward. and everyone on the program knew about it—civil servants. and that’s exactly what he did—so there was a perception in the program office that perhaps we would be able to ‘escape’ compliance with the directive. The Air Force had issued a mandate to draw down the workforce. ‘I would rather retire than let that many people go. and Alistair Cockburn My Engineering Staff Shrunk from 80 to 12 Judy Stokley recalls the challenges she faced when she took over as program director of the Advanced Medium Range Air-to-Air Missile (AMRAAM) at Eglin Air Force Base in Florida: “Talk about a difficult start. not the least of which was the mandated drawdown plan that had not been met. “The program director before me had not been able to face letting people go.’ he had said. and support contractors.

It was the first time in my life that I had experienced being disliked and gossiped about. people rushed to gather around her. I had to deal with disgruntled people whispering behind my back when I walked past them. and let me tell you. By that. I had never experienced anything like it before. and a report was given each time to explain what had been done to address the concerns expressed at the last meeting. AMRAAM’s chief engineer. “It was neither pleasant nor easy. and she reassured them that they would receive assistance in finding new jobs. was among the few people in the program who supported Judy’s efforts: . more than half of them would no longer be working in the program office. The cards were deposited in a box at the end of the meeting. She held monthly meetings where she gave everyone note cards to anonymously write down complaints or recommendations. Every constructive recommendation—no matter how mundane—was actually implemented. On a personal level. All you have to do is watch the evening news to realize that it would be foolish to write such things off as impossible.” In order to defuse the tension. George Sudan. The process moved forward. It was a daunting task to tell them that in less than a year. I mean walk into the office with a gun and start shooting people. After the meeting ended. there is no pleasure in knowing that you are being blamed for other people’s pain. The initial reaction was dead silence. She tried to make it clear that she did not intend to just pass out pink slips. One thing that I worried about was that somebody in the program office might take that frustration to an extreme. competing for her attention to convince her that their particular positions were indispensable. and the program office team was reduced to just 68 by the end of the fiscal year.126 Mastering the Leadership roLe in project ManageMent Judy called a meeting of all 200 workers who were assigned to the AMRAAM program in order to explain the drawdown plan. Judy provided them with an outlet to express their frustration.

I did it and produced a report. she proved that acquisition reform doesn’t have to be a pipe dream. and make sure it stayed there until our base commander either transferred or retired. The government simulations might have been necessary during the research and development stage. Her reaction was very different than her predecessor’s. . Still. “When Judy became program director. AMRAAM’s chief financial officer. 127 “I was glad when Judy arrived at AMRAAM.” No one needed a study to see that the AMRAAM program was spending too much money. my engineering staff had shrunk from 80 to 12. lock it up inside my desk drawer. After the six-month process was completed. Dennis Mallik. we knew that we had seen the dawn of a new day. including two contractors (Hughes and Raytheon) with their own simulation models. no matter how dedicated a leader.” Likewise. The contractors were the ones who needed the data.’ she said. the Navy with its model. In the early 1990s. I understood immediately that it was time to open up my desk drawer and dust off that report. but he told me to take that report. and two independent simulations conducted at Eglin Air Force Base. and they were already getting that at their own facilities. There were five separate simulation models checking the performance of the missile. She seemed to understand that acquisition reform—real reform—entailed something more significant than the cosmetic changes I had seen thus far. her predecessor asked me to do a cost study on how to save money. ‘Why. could change the status quo and bring about serious reform. To many of us who had given up hope that real reform was possible. but the need for that much expensive redundancy had to be called into question after the production phase started. recalls: “We talked about acquisition reform in the AMRAAM program office for some time before Judy took over as program director. In the end. we’ve got to get this information out to people. I wondered whether anyone.

Judy Stokley personally experienced the weight of what was at stake. but we do have a lot of people who like to dabble in it. that. AMRAAM’s chief engineer. starting with a call one day that the base commander at Eglin wanted to see her: “Some of my people got wind of what was coming and warned me that the base commander was furious about not being funded for this. Here’s their software guy. If he fakes left. so we’ve got to have a radio frequency guy.128 Mastering the Leadership roLe in project ManageMent Sometimes it might appear that government engineers are too busy telling the contractors how to do their job rather than doing their own. Let me review this. you fake left.’ They expected us to line up with the contractor as though it were a basketball game. . George Sudan. but that requires the support of management. Let me see how you did that. so we’ve got to have a software guy. Here’s their radio frequency guy. Engineers need to get out of the meddling business and into the specifications and verification business. the reforms being introduced would be expected to have a tremendous impact on a number of parties involved. “Unfortunately. claims: “We don’t do engineering very well in the government anymore. the attitude of management at AMRAAM was that: ‘You can’t trust these dirty contractors. and the other thing. we were harassing our ‘opponents’ all the time. ‘Let me see your documents.’” AMRAAM was the largest program on Eglin Air Force Base. Thus. He had apparently already complained about me through his chain of command. with various stakeholders receiving AMRAAM money each year and viewing that as their right. For our part on the government side. They’re all out to take advantage of you.

she remained courteous. have a problem with the idea that a contractor should make a profit: “They think that they need to go to the negotiating table having gotten the contractor down so low on his cost that if he has one problem. We don’t pay her to shore up work forces at the product centers. he attacked every word out of Judy’s mouth with caustic remarks along the lines of how contractors are out there making millions off the government and how he didn’t have any use for industry. Suddenly. he’s going to be in the red. Thank you very much for your attention today and all the time you have given me.” Throughout the meeting in his conference room. the worst thing in the world is to do business with a contractor in the red. red in the face and with eyes bulging. He sat down without speaking. especially in the Department of Defense. people were already seated all around the table. Still. I want him to make a profit. I said. and I want to help him make it. especially when it occurs in a public forum. By the time I arrived at his big. Judy understood that many people in the government. making it clear that he felt no need to be civil. I always shock them when I remark. That way. he can’t get out ahead of the problems and can’t invest in my products.’ After that. where he was told.’ To me. it’s a big deal to meet with a base commander. ‘We pay her to execute efficient and effective programs. “At the end of the briefing. so he demanded a face-to-face meeting. beautiful conference room. ‘I will proceed as planned with this program. ‘Sure. “In the Air Force.’” . 129 “I heard that he had gone all the way to my bosses in Washington. he had to figure out how to deal with me on his own. the commander flung open the door to his private office and strode into the conference room.

“I wanted to talk with them about our ‘partnership. she also knew that downsizing alone was a necessary. and teamwork between the government and the contractors. and it illustrated all that was wrong with AMRAAM. The contractor documented every change in parts. or screw. The government paid the contractor to make . down to the lowest-level nut.130 Mastering the Leadership roLe in project ManageMent Partnership The downsizing was painful. and Judy struggled to sell it both to government and industry. both for many people in the base as well as for Judy herself. Although she was authorized by the Pentagon to proceed with the downsizing and knew fully well how to achieve it. and what we were going to do to improve it. To make my point. However. So Judy took it upon herself to change the project culture. involving a shift from control to trust and responsibility. people had added endless low-level specs. like for instance if a part went obsolete or there was a problem with a vendor.’ what was wrong with it. and it was a disaster. then the contractor had to submit an Engineering Change Proposal and the government had to approve it. bolt. her mission would not be truly accomplished. Not long after she announced the drawdown plan in the program office. “If something needed to be changed for any reason. but insufficient. the two contractors building the missile. condition for lasting success. and sent those change proposals all day long. Over the years. The document was hundreds of pages thick. mutual support. she hosted a meeting with several of the key members of Hughes and Raytheon. it would prove to be an arduous and complicated task to create a relationship of trust. She believed that without a radical change in the culture of the organization. I don’t think anyone could make sense of it. Acquisition reform was difficult to grasp for many people involved with AMRAAM. I brought a copy of the ‘spec tree’ that governed the program at the time.

and you are going to make sure that we have a good product out there.’” This was a perfect expression of what was holding them back.’ he continued. It was indicative of the way in which they had managed their business for years. 131 the changes or else they didn’t get done. while paying a fair price for the product on the government side. I used to say. we’re a team. Because if you do. I realized that I wasn’t going to convince him . you understand what she’s saying. the government pays. They couldn’t see opportunity. They were used to doing things a certain way. but what she’s telling you is that with this deal. ‘If I want my contractor to flush the toilet in Tucson. ‘Starting Monday. “’Oh man. Raytheon’s chief engineer stood up and spoke across the room to his vice president: ‘Boss. I’m going to help you make a decent profit.’” Judy wanted to change that mindset and get the contractors to develop what she referred to as a “heart and soul” relationship with their products.’ said the Raytheon vice president. we pay.’ “Everyone looked at him. we don’t want any part of this. they could only see risk. I’ve got to make sure that before you agree to this. and then back at me. I have to write him a contract letter and pay him to do it. All of a sudden.’ I told my counterparts on the contractor side: ‘I’m going to help you pay for everything. and change— regardless of how necessary—made them jittery. To say that things got tense is putting it mildly. simple set of performance specifications that the contractor could control. She was striving to create a win-win situation for both sides by taking an unwieldy spec tree and writing a good. I don’t think there’s any way you’ll agree to it.’ “I laid all this out at the meeting I held with the contractors. ‘Today. “Coming together in a partnership meant more than just saying. if we change something. ‘if we change something here.

Realizing the huge impact that Chuck would have on the success of the change. and he feared the problems that could befall us if we wavered from that. and I went to Eglin Air Force Base to discuss the issue.132 Mastering the Leadership roLe in project ManageMent to embrace reform if he fundamentally didn’t want to change. but he could also see where we might go and what we . They were so cynical about working with the government that they had a hard time believing I could offer any kind of deal that would be good for them. Chuck Anderson. and it was our problem. and when she took over as the program director. It was only my second week on the job.” Chuck believed that his company had a responsibility to take care of its customers and live up to its agreements. ‘We’re going to fix the missiles. it was a different story with the Hughes vice president. she recounts: “Fortunately. “I walked straight into the program director’s office and said. we had a problem—a big problem—with the control section of the missile. Judy saw that. but that’s not the way I thought we should do business. Chuck not only knew where we had been. had a past experience with Judy and was much closer to her management philosophy than his superiors. My company wasn’t obligated to do a darn thing. the head of the AMRAAM program at Hughes. even prior to her initiation of the drawdown: “Back when Judy Stokley was Deputy Program Director.’ That was a $3-million decision. and we’re going to do it at our company’s expense. The best I could hope for was that he would go along with it until he saw that the reforms worked.” As it turned out. It was a design issue. He could only see where we had been. she understood that she had a teammate ready and willing to reform a troubled program. Chuck Anderson. His mouth hung open in disbelief. We at Hughes needed to fix it.

‘I think I can do it with about a hundred people.’ At the time we had around 400 people working on AMRAAM. but still could not come to an agreement. He knew that he could not get the job done with so few people and warned that the program would not be the same in that case. “When Raytheon and Hughes merged. we have to trust the customer on this. “When we rejoined the group. 133 could become. ‘Chuck.’” . so we would still need to displace a significant number of people.’ I told her. ‘We have to trust that they understand what kind of risk we’re taking in signing up for this. “Finally. I remember the look in my team’s eyes. They knew that many of the people who had worked on the program for years would lose their jobs and that the rest of them would have to figure out how to get the job done with one-quarter of the former workforce. Judy and I went into my office. Chuck stayed with the program and the Raytheon vice president left to tend other patches of status quo. but the fact that we had the right person in place on the contractor’s side and a meeting of the minds was a tremendous help in implementing the needed reforms. position by position. Judy announced that we would keep 100 people on the program. I was fortunate to have someone like him on the industry side.’ I said to them. They also knew that a handshake was our only assurance that our customer was going to live up to the agreement. ‘Look. The merger created lots of other issues to deal with. They went through the staffing requirements. and she said. tell me what you need to do this job. apart from everyone else. We shook hands on the number.” Chuck Anderson recalls the crucial meeting when Judy’s team came out to Tucson to work with them on staffing and initially proposed drawing down the workforce to as low as 30 positions.

or TSPR. I actually had to get Raytheon’s chief operating officer to approve it. The bottom line was that I had run successful programs all of my career. As such.134 Mastering the Leadership roLe in project ManageMent Chuck was no stranger to taking risks: “I decided that we were going to open our books to the Air Force. prompting a swift visit from the Raytheon corporate police. In . “At the time I entered into this agreement with Judy. They came to my office and told me that I was breaking the rules. and support missiles that would be affordable. My prior track record probably had something to do with it.’ literally. Anything over a dollar had to go to Lexington for approval. he knew that the outcome would be worth the risk: “The biggest reform of all was getting government out of the way to allow the contractor to do the job of designing and building better missiles.” It wasn’t the first time he had been told that he had no authority to make an agreement with a customer: “They’d try to tell me. I was on report a lot. Beyond all that. this meant that the contractor would accept responsibility to do what was necessary and sufficient to develop. and I was believable. Arizona—a long way from Lexington. ‘That’s confidential data! You’re not allowed to show that kind of data to the government. and then threw them out of my office. we definitely benefited by being in Tucson. I still had a Hughes badge on.’ “I told them. ‘Go to hell. and it’s hard to argue with success. too.” When it became obvious to Chuck that Judy was trying to seize the merger between Raytheon and Hughes as a catalyst for real reform. and readily available. ‘That has to go to Lexington’ (home to Raytheon’s corporate headquarters). How did I get it done? I said we could pull it off. combat capable. Officially. deliver. We called it Total System Performance Responsibility. warrant.

As ridiculous as it may seem. Don’t worry.” But as Chuck knew all too well. changing a capacitor required a four-month approval process up to that point. Usually. 135 layman’s terms. All my freedom to make decisions and ‘do what’s right’ would disappear if I didn’t make reasonable profits. it meant that the government would trust the contractor to decide when the product successfully met performance requirements. I trust my customer and they trust me—so you should trust both of us. recalls: “Judy Stokley’s intentions were good. but I had been burned in the past by people with good intentions. In fact. it was exactly the opposite of what government employees and contractors were used to doing. the contracting officer for Raytheon. Tom Gillman. no doubt. whoever has the best lawyer wins.” One welcome change of TSPR would be to eliminate the long waits required for government approval on simple spec changes: “I had to have a whole bureaucracy in place just to substitute a round capacitor for a square one on a circuit board. Try telling your bosses. Likewise. In both cases. This was a unique approach in government contracting. and I had to sell it to my people.” And a hard sell it was. I would come under more scrutiny by my corporate office. This was a new way of doing business. change doesn’t always come easy: “With this merger. I was skeptical that the government was capable of living up to the commitment they made. it hasn’t been for lack of trying. I have made commitments to the government that I have been unable to fulfill. “I have to admit. . thick documents called contracts.’ Most contractual relationships in this industry revolve around legalistic interpretations of big. ‘I’m going to do several hundred million dollars worth of business on a handshake. Good people in the government have made commitments to me as a contractor that they have been unable to fulfill.

the more feeding it took. One thing was clear from the process.” . a “mirror exercise” was conducted. Suddenly. describes the sense of mutual distrust: “The contractor’s side thought that the government wanted the product for the lowest price. plus the people to do the work. we didn’t have to put as much into care and feeding. We had to be staffed in such a way as to take care of our customers. and that freed us up to pay more attention to building missiles. Following the meeting where Chuck and Judy made their handshake agreement. AMRAAM’s chief financial officer. it became immediately apparent that there was little trust between them. some of the team thought that the contractor only cared about a big profit and didn’t care about quality.” Several key people on Judy’s team came up with original steps aimed at enhancing the understanding and acceptance of the new culture. The bigger their bureaucracy. On the government side. A large staff on the customer’s side is disruptive to work. That went a long way in proving that the commitment was for real. and they thought that the government team was willing to suck our company dry if that was what it took to get a low price. with a facilitator asking each side—government and contractor—to make one list of its most important issues and another list of what it thought was the other side’s most important issues. I used to have one person in my organization for every person that the government was going to assign to a project. Everyone needed to work to dispel these toxic stereotypes. or else we were never going to be an effective team.136 Mastering the Leadership roLe in project ManageMent “One thing that Judy did to win my trust was to eliminate the bureaucracy on their side. Dennis Mallik. and so we had a lot of hand-holders. When the two sides shared their information.

Profit wasn’t their main concern. It occurred to me that if I educated the contractor about government program planning and budgeting. and we kept in close contact the rest of the time. I believed that the contractor’s people would do the best job they could for us.’ I explained.” He learned quite a bit from that visit: “They explained that Raytheon had gone deep into debt to buy Hughes Aircraft.” As Dennis explains. it was cash flow.” The visit also netted him a better rapport with his contractor counterparts: “We continued to meet face-to-face once every couple of months.” . they were stunned to learn how open my relationship was with Raytheon. ‘You’ll be surprised by how much better you do once you get to know the people you’re working with. I went out to Raytheon and asked for everything I thought I needed to know—and they gave it to me. with frequent emails and telephone calls. and it would be available tomorrow. They had been told that they couldn’t ask their contractors for information. so I helped them to understand that I had a two-year delay before I could get anything written into the budget. open communication between the government and the contractor was not the norm on other Air Force projects: “When some of the people working on other programs came by to ask me for advice. One of the things that we worked on was figuring out how I could improve cash flow on the program. 137 Dennis decided to apply his own experience to solving the problem and put together a presentation for the contractor’s financial managers and program managers: “I had worked for a contractor for 12 years before I entered the government. They thought that all I had to do was ask for money today. I might be able to help the situation. What I didn’t understand was how little they understood us. but they saw that I didn’t operate that way.

our traditional way of operating is to ask. People were trying to apply that same CLIN approach to understanding what we were doing on AMRAAM. Cradle to grave responsibility. “TSPR Is Not a CLIN. came up with the idea of a coffee mug with the slogan. The way we account for each of these costs on a contract is through a line item: a Contract Line Item Number (CLIN).138 Mastering the Leadership roLe in project ManageMent In another attempt to promote the new culture in AMRAAM. Wendy Massielo. I wanted people to stop thinking of it as a line item. and instead look at it as a philosophy. it means so much more than the cost of delivering a missile. The way it worked was that damaged missiles still under warranty were sent to the contractor’s facility in Tucson. that’s what we were trying to instill in the contractor.” as a way of helping to embed this change in philosophy in people’s minds: “In the government. Col. while those with an expired warranty went to government depots for repair. describes the waste involved in the process prior to implementing the new TSPR approach: “Certain roles that were traditionally performed by the government now made sense for the contractor to do. contracting officer for the U. ‘Well. and one of those was the repair of damaged missiles.S. Air Force. as a number.S. Air Force.” Jerry Worsham. what does that cost?’ no matter what ‘that’ is. chief of logistics for the U. “I found that I had to answer the same question all the time: How much was this Total System Performance Responsibility going to cost? Many people from both the government and the contractor were at a loss to understand what TSPR meant. When you embrace the TSPR concept. .

” In addition to repairing the missiles. I became more convinced of the need for reform. I was there to try to make the most of taxpayer dollars. the clock started ticking. 139 “The more depots you have. when a missile arrived at our depot. built. and the cost savings were substantial—approximately $10 million worth of savings in spare parts alone. program manager at Raytheon. “Some of the depots resisted giving up their work to the contractor. It was a difficult task at times. Each time I talked with someone who was stubbornly opposed to reform. We looked at what it would cost for the one location at Tucson to do all the depot work. which compromised reliability. Brock McCaman. It made sense that if you could combine those depots. the more expenses they incur for the program because every location has to have spare parts in inventory. you could streamline the operation and save money.” Increasing the responsibility on the contractor also enhanced its sense of ownership. one of the other things slated for reform was sustainment engineering: “Certain elements of the missile had a history of breaking. plus management and maintenance facilities. They thought that I was there to shut down jobs. Who better to keep the engineering up-to-date than the contractor who designed. they only saw that to mean jobs flowing from a military depot to a contractor facility. As soon as I started talking about the contractor having total system responsibility for the life of the missile. and knew the missile better than anybody else? “The way I saw it. but it was necessary work. demonstrates how being innovative and initiating change also allowed it to save money: “Traditionally. and we had exactly 60 days to do whatever was .

Suppose that I receive one missile that’s smashed up. “Here is another way we’re saving money on repairs: Before TSPR. “This is the conclusion I came to: Let me decide what to work on and how to work on it. what we call ‘beyond economical repair.’ We said to Judy. Now we’re measured on field availability.140 Mastering the Leadership roLe in project ManageMent necessary to repair the missile and make it available for shipment again. we send them a bill once a month for a fraction of the cost of what we were doing . who worked on it. and screw we replaced on a missile. ‘Want to save money?—then let’s forget about turnaround time. and I can provide you with more missiles per month than I can with ‘turn-around time. smashed-up missile fixed so that we can send it out before the 60-day deadline.’ our collective response was. we can take the contract for less money and deliver more missiles. I receive five others that just need simple repairs. there’s no such thing as beyond economical repair. ‘Here’s my budget. Because the clock is ticking on each unit.’ From a customer’s point of view. we had to tell the government about every nut. “For example. how much it cost. “When Judy came to us and said. Because of this. I have to throw all kinds of people and resources to get that first. sometimes a missile is returned so broken that it isn’t worth repairing. ‘Yikes!’ We realized immediately that we couldn’t keep repairing missiles the way we always had—the money wasn’t there. Today. Everything is economical if you’ve already paid the contractor to do it. and how many hours it took to repair the unit from the day it came in until the day it went out—and we were required to file reports with all that data. After that. Give me the flexibility to push that one aside and work on those other five missiles. bolt. and I can get them out with the same amount of energy and for the same cost as the single missile that needs more work.’ and she agreed.

business reps.’ “The best way to do that was to be on site. for the taxpayer. This way of contracting works better for us. an engineer with the U. That was the role of an ‘enabler. 141 before. the contractor is. I had to reassure them that whatever we talked about would remain confidential until . for the government. not oversight. We’ll work with them to provide insight—not direction. and we get the missiles back into the field sooner. and engineers. but rather dealt with everyone— contracts people. I was there to help in whatever capacity I could. Judy Stokley and George Sudan were adamant about this.” Constancy of Purpose Jon Westphal. finance staff. working side-by-side and supporting open communication between the contractor and the government. They knew enough across the board to communicate with people and get them in touch with whoever was needed to help solve their problems. Air Force. The contractor’s employees wondered how safe it was to tell this government guy anything and how much they should keep secret.S. program managers. “The first thing I had to do was try to convince the contractor that even though I was from the government.’ and that was what I did. ‘Let them do their job. Probably more important than anything else. and especially for the war fighter. differentiates between roles and describes his role as an “enabler”: “The government is not in the manufacturing business.” The enablers had to have a broad background because they were not experts in any one field per se. the contractors had to feel comfortable that the enablers understood what they were talking about.

but I’m the customer. These guys had complete exposure to all our dirty laundry. ‘Yeah. I needed to check something with the director of operations. And I don’t care how good you are. but I was skeptical at first about the whole idea of using them. I knew that I had been genuinely accepted!” For Brock McCaman. it was easier to forge relationships because more and more people understood my role. it took some time to get comfortable with the notion of a government representative being an asset rather than a liability: “The government thought the enablers were absolutely necessary. and that’s because AMRAAM became an altogether different program under Judy Stokley. ‘Hey. Get in the back of the line. ‘Come on now. I’m just going to ask Rick a quick question.’ I said. I walked down to his office. ‘You’re an enabler.142 Mastering the Leadership roLe in project ManageMent we had identified the potential impact of a problem and created a plan to overcome it. Before TSPR. “It turned out I was wrong. Once I got past their initial suspicions about me. you still have some dirty laundry hanging around. government reps would get big points for sniffing out problems in our organization. program manager at Raytheon.’ They objected. there’s a line here. ‘Look guys. “About nine months after I started going out to the contractor’s site in Tucson. when the guys in line jumped on me. I walked up to the front of the line and was about to stick my head in the office and ask my question. I figured that this would be just another bunch of government guys watching over us. Now reporting problems was no longer considered as good behavior because it violated trust.’ And they said. . reporting every little thing. where there were five or six engineers standing outside waiting in line. what do you think you’re doing?’ I said.’ Right then.

we had a program-wide discussion about whether or not to continue using the enablers. ‘Don’t come to Washington to try and revisit this. I can’t get approval for it. I guess that’s the way it is. She went on to tell me that PBA was a ‘dead issue. 143 “Each enabler had different strengths.’ he said. ‘Chuck. Operating under verbal approval for Price Based Acquisition (PBA) from her boss in Washington. I thought I could do it. “But I pulled myself together that weekend. she pitched the plan to Hughes and Raytheon before the merger as one of the benefits of reforming their old way of doing business. and yet they never tried to give us contract direction. Then a month before they were supposed to award the contract to Raytheon as the sole source provider. I can’t deliver on Price Based Acquisition. “I was crushed. but I can’t.’ .’ ‘Well Judy. her boss in the Office of the Secretary of Defense told her that they would not be allowed to go forward with PBA. what do you think about this?’ And he would come back with some real jewels.’ I was so upset that I had to stop driving.’ She said.’” One of the things that Judy wanted to do was establish a long-term pricing agreement with the contractors so that their vendors. I got the call on my cell phone as I was leaving Eglin. ‘Hey. That was probably as down as I have ever been about my job. ‘I’m sorry. ‘Let’s have a video conference on Monday. and get everybody together to figure out what to do. ‘Are you kidding? They’re too valuable not to have around. There were times during meetings when I would turn to one of them and say. “At one point down the road. claiming that a lot of people in the political system weren’t happy about the merger. and I pulled off the road. I said. if that’s the way it is.’ I said. would not be forced to provide certified cost or pricing data every year. many of whom are small businesses. and I called Chuck Anderson at home on Sunday.

At first there was a lot of venting. and then Tom Gillman. but the other part was that I took it too personally. highlights the importance of trust in his working relationship with Dennis Mallik on the Air Force side of the AMRAAM team: “The fact that Dennis invited me to his internal budget meetings and wasn’t afraid to publicly display the openness that existed between the Air Force and Raytheon was not only remarkable. more importantly. I was focused on implementing all these great reforms and strategies. things no one would have believed they could do when we first started working together. spoke up: ‘I never thought the Price Based Acquisition mattered anyway. I explained the situation. “When you’ve got a strong team. and I expected every part of the process to fall into place. the contracting officer for Raytheon. the contracting officer. there were no barriers anymore. I had been part of trusting relationships with my government .” explains Judy. We have to get cost data from all the same vendors on our other programs. Part of the hurt was that I thought it would damage the business. I was embarrassed— but.” Tom Gillman. I thought so much depended on getting Price Based Acquisition. it was all perfectly workable. they had it worked out before I even knew it was a problem.” “I learned something extremely valuable from this teamwork. it really doesn’t help us that much.’ “I still remember that Friday night after the phone call and how I felt like driving off the road. they will figure out how to overcome the little barriers that pop up along the way. Anytime we had a problem. They did miraculous things. when we brought the team leaders together for the video conference. By the second year. it was unprecedented in government-contractor relationships. so unless the entire department goes Price Based. I came to understand that my pride had been hurt because I had promised people something I couldn’t do.144 Mastering the Leadership roLe in project ManageMent “On Monday. I had gotten too full of myself.

make sure that the design is right. it was expected that I would speak up and not wait to be asked for my input. every month. He regarded me as a member of ‘his’ team as much as anybody who was in the room wearing a government badge. was constancy of purpose. make sure that we meet every requirement. “It was the trust to be able to share with your counterpart what is really going on rather than some version that’s been smoothed over by your leadership. but these were one-to-one relationships that we kept quiet. but never use it against you. “My message was: ‘Let’s do what’s right. He asked me only once. approximately 80 of us. whenever I saw anything that could impact the AMRAAM program.” Sustaining a major cultural change may require constant maintenance. but I understood why I was there. Because I wanted to honor this trust. It was all about our abilities to get the job done. 145 counterparts before. and the whole purpose of that meeting. I have to emphasize that word again: our. It was to get everybody aligned—or brainwashed. I never used any of the data that I saw at these meetings for business purposes at Raytheon outside of the AMRAAM program. as some said. Our customer will help . lest our leadership get wind of them and scold us for setting such a dangerous example for others. Chuck Anderson describes a practice that he instituted to sustain change: “All of my team members. We rented a ballroom. ‘Do you see anything limiting our abilities to get the job done?’ After that. Let’s make sure that we deliver on time. “Dennis never told me I couldn’t. It was the trust that your counterpart is going to listen to you thoughtfully and try to help you come up with a solution. We did this every month. met for half a day off-site at a hotel.

These were people willing to make decisions. proving themselves time and time again. so let’s try to work through it. all hand-selected by me.’ ‘I’ve got to write a report for these guys. You need to have real leaders on your team when you’re doing something like we set out to do on AMRAAM. the contracting officer for Raytheon. and the ones who did not “get it” were eliminated from the team: “I was the one whose job was on the line if we screwed up. “We’ve got so many smart people in this business who can’t bring themselves to make decisions because they’re afraid of failing. I’m talking about six or seven people. everybody runs to the contract and says. ‘What does it say on paper?’ Not us. take risks. They are committed to this. and then by definition we’ll succeed and we’ll meet our financial targets.” “But. get on with it.’” Ultimately. most of Chuck’s team members had faith in him as a leader.” Tom Gillman. members of my team brought up examples of how the government wasn’t living up to their end of the deal: ‘I still have to do this. I knew every one of them.146 Mastering the Leadership roLe in project ManageMent us in every way possible. and not study a problem to death. In the normal mode of government contracting. ‘but we’ve got to have faith in the leadership there. The first thing we did was . if it didn’t work out—and I did my best to make it clear that I knew we were doing the right thing.’ I said. That’s why I made sure to surround myself with a team of effective leaders. ‘There are probably always going to be problems. concurs: “All programs have problems.’ “During our open discussions. I selected people who could make swift decisions if that’s what was required. And that’s what they did. you can’t do it on your own.’ That sort of thing.

000 missiles that weren’t under warranty. they decided that it was the right thing to do to see if they could figure out what was happening. The average unit procurement cost for the program decreased from more than $750. and that typifies what this kind of business relationship can offer. .000. We could have hidden behind the specifications. but it was the right thing to do for the war fighter. I used to say that it was like buying a Sony TV. saving the Air Force and Navy $150 million over the course of four years. then we decided on the best way to solve the problem. given our resources. the AMRAAM program received the DOD Life Cycle Cost Reduction Award. Once we determined that. Because of their quality control system. they were not required to resolve that one percent. “We locked some engineers in the lab for six months and had them duplicate that failure. They determined that with a simple modification of the missile. it was determined that failure occurred less than one percent of the time. on a particular piece of missile hardware that had to work only 90 percent of the time. “When people asked me about the impact of TSPR. What the government tried to instill in us was that same kind of pride in our work. We ended up spending a couple of million dollars to fix 5.” Tom recounts a story of how his people were doing just that: “For example.000 to under $400. Nobody paid us to do the extra work.” In the end. we could eliminate it. 147 ask what the best thing was for the war fighter. but instead. Contractually. They say that Sony technicians never turn the televisions on when they put them together. they know that they’re going to work.

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then Israel will initiate the unilateral security step of disengagement from the Palestinians..” 149 . which will reduce as much as possible the number of Israelis located in the heart of the Palestinian population.... a change in the deployment of settlements. on February 3..6 A Peaceful Evacuation: Building a Multi-Project Battalion by Leading Upward by Alexander Laufer. like the Gaza settlements. This reduction of friction will require the extremely difficult step of changing the deployment of some of the settlements. 2003. when he announced: “..if in a few months the Palestinians still continue to disregard their part in implementing the Road Map. Zvi Ziklik.. and Dora Cohenca-Zall The Turbulent Birth of the Unilateral Disengagement Israeli Prime Minister Ariel Sharon shocked the entire political spectrum on December 18. Sharon clarified that the disengagement would primarily be from the Gaza Strip: “It is my intention to carry out an evacuation—sorry...” Then. a relocation—of settlements that cause us problems and of places that we will not hold on to anyway in a final settlement.. The Disengagement Plan will include. 2004.

” a . 2004. In the end. However. Most polls showed approximately 55 percent of party members supporting the plan before the referendum. while eliciting startled disbelief from his left-wing opponents in Israel.” He applauded the strategic value of Jewish communities such as Netzarim in the Gaza area. which he refused to do. Sharon announced that he accepted the referendum results and would take time to consider his steps.” The disengagement plan was indeed divisive. The plan that the cabinet approved called for a complete disengagement from the Palestinians in the Gaza Strip. leaving the government with a minority in the Parliament. declaring that “the fate of Netzarim is the fate of Jerusalem. Opponents of the plan and some other ministers called on Sharon to hold a national referendum in order to prove that he had a mandate. which forced Sharon to later establish a National Unity government. Failing to gain the support of several senior ministers.150 Mastering the Leadership roLe in project ManageMent Sharon. more than 60 percent of the voters cast their ballot against the disengagement plan. which he described as being “no different from Tel Aviv. He had been elected on the mandate to protect the settlements. which was held on May 2. two additional ministers resigned. The plan was approved with a 14–7 majority. including the relocation of all 21 Jewish settlements there. who was one of the settlement movement’s staunchest allies. on July 25. However. outraged and alienated many of his right-wing nationalist supporters. and a limited relocation of four settlements in northern Samaria. 2004. but only after two ministers were dismissed from the cabinet. Sharon agreed that his party would hold a referendum on the plan in advance of a vote by the Israeli Cabinet. the people who opposed the plan were much more active in voicing their opinion. For example. 2004. Polls consistently showed support for the plan in the 55–60 percent range and opposition running around 30–35 percent. the “Human Chain. he and his government largely ignored the results and approved an amended disengagement plan on June 6. Consequent to passing the plan.

000 settlers. is remembered as one of the most sensitive and divisive events in the history of Israel. the Parliament rejected a bill to delay the implementation of the disengagement plan on March 28. house size. from the Gaza Strip to the Western Wall in Jerusalem. as agreed upon in the peace treaty with Egypt. The total cost of the compensation package. 2005. as approved by the Parliament. which was part of a unilateral withdrawal without any peace treaty.000 people. would be met with strong resistance.000 people marched in cities throughout Israel to protest the plan under the slogan “100 cities support the settlements in the Gaza Strip. at the opening of the Parliament winter session. The protestors formed a human chain over a distance of 90 km.000 settlers was about $870 million. The compensation plan used a formula based on location. and which involved 8.” On September 14. On October 11. about 100. when the evacuation was carried out as part of a peace treaty and most of the . for the 8. The Systematic Preparations of the Israeli Defense Forces It was widely expected that the evacuation from the Gaza Strip. The traumatic evacuation of Israeli settlements from Sinai 25 years earlier. Even then. most of whom were affiliated with right-wing parties. joined forces to protest against the plan and demand a national referendum. In June. 151 rally of close to 100. A couple of months later. Sharon outlined his plan to start legislation for the disengagement process at the beginning of November. the Israeli cabinet approved a plan to compensate settlers for leaving the Gaza Strip. and in particular the evacuation of the city of Yamit. After several rounds of votes and ensuing upheaval in the government over the following six months. the Israeli High Court of Justice rejected the appeal of the settlers against the government. and number of family members. among other factors.

Unfortunately. He invited Lieutenant Colonel Daniel. finding and developing new employment opportunities for them. Eventually. Also.152 Mastering the Leadership roLe in project ManageMent settlers were willing to leave peacefully. the government decided that the IDF would be responsible for the evacuation with assistance from the police. the Israeli Parliament formally approved the government’s decision. Major General Dan Harel. was put in charge of the mission. a parallel civil administrative body was established and tasked with developing both temporary and permanent accommodations for the evacuees while maintaining their community structure. despite the government’s declaration of the evacuation as a national mission. not to evacuate citizens from their homes. and facilitating the transfer of compensation packages. At the beginning. a violent confrontation still took place between a small minority of the settlers and the soldiers who were sent to evacuate them. head of the Southern Command. the chief psychologist of the Southern . both of which were reluctant to take responsibility for the mission. it was unclear whether the evacuation would be carried out by the police or the Israeli Defense Forces (IDF). The police leadership was simply worried that it lacked sufficient manpower to carry it out. The IDF claimed that its forces were trained to protect the country from its enemies. providing psychological assistance to adults and youths. the majority of the settlers was firm in the belief that the evacuation would not take place and thus for a long time refused to interact with this new organization. In late October 2004. He formed a small think tank that began examining the meaning of the decision. At the same time. the IDF was worried that the lack of public consensus would not only render the accomplishment of this mission more difficult but might eventually affect its ability to carry out its normal tasks. The evacuation from the Gaza Strip was sure to be even more traumatic. including the operational implications for the day after.

Daniel gathered together the IDF’s psychologists one day in November 2004 for a “day of thinking together. telling him: “You psychologists have a rare opportunity this time to take front stage and professionally lead a complex military operation. Daniel recalls: “Due to the complex situation. as well as the day after. it turned out that no preliminary preparations for the evacuations had been carried out. over-determination can lead to uncontrolled exertion of force. and it became clear that they were not suitable models for the current project.” with the objective of expressing and listening to their different opinions about the potential problems expected in the evacuation project—an attempt to batten down the hatches. The key question identified during the meeting was how to execute the mission according to the government’s guidelines while ensuring that the damage incurred during the evacuation itself. Our success will be measured by the ability to help people find the correct balance between determination and sensitivity.” In that spirit.’ which became the vision of the entire disengagement. to join his small think tank. The two sources that seemed to be most relevant were the evacuation of the French civilian settlements from Algiers in the 1950s and the evacuation of the city of Yamit. “We were forced to act upon our own healthy intuition.” Daniel conducted searches to locate relevant information on the topic of evacuation to learn from the experience of the past. which had been the largest Israeli settlement in Sinai. On the one hand. As Daniel commented.” . I coined the clear and catchy slogan ‘with determination and sensitivity. we were concerned that the emotional burden on the soldiers would be too heavy. In both cases. would be minimal. 153 Command. Following the assembly. On the other hand. over-sensitivity might land the soldiers in situations in which they are not able to exert force at all.

finding that often the greatest concerns were not about the anticipated intensity of the settlers’ physical resistance. for stopping .000 soldiers would be divided into six circles. was to use large concentrated masses of soldiers as an effective means of psychological warfare. each of which would have a different function. After several weeks of deliberating between several alternatives. concentrating a large force of soldiers opposite the evacuees might weaken their will and ability to resist.154 Mastering the Leadership roLe in project ManageMent Many other key issues were identified during the meeting. The plan called for the IDF and the Israeli police to amass a force of about 42. we found that the most appropriate solution.000 troops on the ground plus a backup force of 13. On the other hand. from the perspectives of both the evacuees and the evacuators.” On the one hand. The 55. and following the meeting Daniel distributed a document to the various military entities summarizing the critical aspects of the disengagement project from the psychologists’ point of view. The other five circles would be responsible for supporting the first circle. The first circle was designated to be inside the settlement responsible for the evacuation.000. Daniel gave a good analysis of the problem from the military perspective: “It seemed to us that it was very important to reinforce the mental capacity of the evacuators. The IDF’s psychology group continued with preparations for the various scenarios. Thus. The next step involved the establishment of a team of leading psychologists who would help the commanding officers of the various units to combine the operational aspects of the disengagement project with its “softer” aspects. which constituted a critical tier in building the individual’s strength as part of the whole. the IDF operational plans attempted to amass a huge force. a larger group of evacuating soldiers might minimize the probability of individual deviations on the part of the soldiers. but rather about the soldiers’ ability to withstand heart-rending scenarios that might affect them emotionally and thus compromise their performance.

so the increased presence of women in the evacuation force was required. they would simply be outnumbered by the female population among the settlers. It was thus clear to the IDF that an additional effort must be invested in the preparation of the female soldiers. Second. and for responding to Palestinian terrorist activities should they occur during the disengagement. The female soldiers would also have to cope with various unique requirements. During the first months of 2005. For example. who would be performing the most difficult task of evacuating the settlers. The IDF recognized that the task of the female soldiers was likely to be more challenging than that of the men. but not to use violence against them. they would be allowed to remove the people physically. the group of psychologists continued in their efforts to expand and refine the guidelines for the evacuation. the army decided that not only combat units would take part in the evacuation. Thus. it was strictly forbidden for the female soldiers to separate the children from their mother in such a way that the mother would not see her children or that the children would not see their mother. as a result of this decision. but also soldiers and commanders from rear units and various staff entities. In these workshops. the participants were trained to evacuate children and families from their homes and to cope with the possibility of evacuation under fire and violence on the part of the settlers. First. would be unarmed and under strict orders not to use violence unless violence was used against them. Due to the need to concentrate so many troops. 155 protestors from disrupting the process. The soldiers operating inside the settlements. because it was decided that female soldiers who had children would not take part in the evacuation. Various . it was expected that most participants would be rather young and therefore possibly more fragile. especially regarding evacuating mothers and their children. often through workshops that prepared the evacuators through practice and at the same time served as a lab for the psychologists. It was decided that women would be evacuated only by female soldiers or policewomen.

each made up of two brigades. At the time. The battalion would eventually be composed of 700 people. who perceived it as a personal challenge. His battalion would be one of the three battalions of the Air Force’s Blue Brigade. According to the plan developed by the . He also learned that the forces designed to take part in the evacuation would be composed of two divisions. which were in turn comprised of three battalions each. Yaron led a design engineering unit in the Air Force. immediately responded favorably and one week later was informed that the Air Force Commander had approved his appointment. was summoned by his commanding officer and asked whether he wanted to volunteer for the evacuation operation as the commander of a battalion. the Brigade Commander convened a forum where Yaron first learned that his manpower would be coming from three very large Air Force dispatching bases. each one hosting a large variety of units. and each platoon was composed of two squads. Each evacuating company included four platoons.” The Fight for the Makeup of the Battalion It was late April 2005 when Yaron. including 3 evacuating companies and 1 company serving the day-to-day needs of the battalion. he got to work immediately. though earlier in his career he served as a deputy battalion commander in the Paratroopers. a Lieutenant Colonel in the Israeli Air Force. On May 10. It was found that playing the role of the evacuees was effective in helping them to exhibit greater sensitivity and better embrace the required new culture “with determination and sensitivity. Yaron. and role playing in which the participants played both the evacuators and the evacuees was performed. When Yaron learned that he would have to build his battalion from scratch.156 Mastering the Leadership roLe in project ManageMent scenarios that were expected to take place during the evacuation were practiced.

12 male soldiers. to approach each house and evacuate its inhabitants. platoons. it would be the responsibility of the individual squad. these meetings took place twice a week in various formats whenever the soldiers had time off from their ongoing activities. anti-aircraft personnel. the upcoming events forced me to rethink the validity of each of these three assumptions. and 1 policeman. Unfortunately. Although the process of placing people at the different levels of the battalion (squads. pilots. and so on. The battalion staff included officers and senior NCOs from a variety of Air Force positions: staff personnel. 157 IDF. and companies) was being implemented. it was assumed that while our task as evacuators might be difficult. so he reacted by sending a lengthy email to a Brigadier General. Yaron describes the commonly held assumptions by the top commanders of the Blue Brigade regarding their mission: “First. it was assumed that our only task leading up to the actual evacuation was to build and prepare the three new battalions. Second. mechanics. he was invited to give a presentation about the mission to the officers of the Blue Brigade. it was assumed that by following the training and operational guidelines prepared by the Southern Command and its psychologists. The difficulties and surprises. would emerge only once the evacuation had been started.” The first surprise encountered by Yaron was that of the behavior among some top officers in the Air Force. On May 17. we would be able to prepare the new battalions without encountering too many difficulties or surprises. One of those officers did not like what he heard. Yaron encouraged the battalion’s company commanders to initiate ongoing meetings with their soldiers. 4 female soldiers. engineers. 2005. Third. Because they all continued to serve in their dispatching units in their original capacities. one of . it was assumed. composed of a commander. all of the hard decisions had already been made by the government and the IDF Southern Command.

as can be deduced from the battalion commander’s words. I began to realize the complexity of the mission and the way in which the message that I am trying to impart might be misunderstood because of the listener’s perception. Among other things. I was disturbed by the fact that the Brigadier general. primarily because of the poor selection process adopted by some of the dispatchers. Although he found that a few of them acted the way he expected by identifying the most suitable people and encouraging them to volunteer. Most importantly. and it caused me to start reflecting on the commitment of some of my superiors. who were mostly colonels. and email communications.” Unfortunately. through face-to-face meetings. but a constraint due to a shortage of police troops.” claiming that “it might be deduced that the expulsion of Jews from their homes has become a highly valued mission. the majority did not do so. who conveyed the message to me. . Yaron made immediate inquiries with the commanders of the dispatching units. we are expecting our soldiers to be ‘determined and sensitive. was not interested in understanding my point of view. Still.” Yaron was shocked by the email message: “I was convinced that my lecture was very appropriate and the feedback I received directly following the meeting was very positive. this time the commanders of the dispatching units. the officer said: “The fact that we are IDF officers in the first circle is not a source of pride. soon enough Yaron was surprised by the behavior of other top officers in the Air Force.” He also rejected the statement that the evacuation is a “highly valued mission. Yaron found that the quality and motivation of certain staff being assigned to the mission fell far short of meeting his needs. telephone calls. complaining about Yaron’s choice of words and overall attitude to the evacuation mission. either because they were not convinced that the evacuation was a crucial mission or simply because they did not want to detract from their ongoing operations by spending energy on it.’ yet here I was not being sensitive enough.158 Mastering the Leadership roLe in project ManageMent the top leaders in the Air Force.

who were chosen largely by drawing lots or by the commanders’ arbitrary decisions. The responses were disappointing. I kept asking myself how I could execute the mission with career soldiers who lacked suitable motivation and skills. It was not uncommon to hear ‘Why me?’ ‘What am I doing here?’ ‘How can I get out of this?’” Likewise. Yaron then approached the commanders of the dispatching units demanding more qualified people. we have no chance of succeeding. to conclude: “The more I understood the task and the more familiar I became with the people who were put at my disposal. one of the company commanders recruited to the battalion. and they invested a great deal of energy in attempts to be relieved from duty. the more concerned I became about the company’s ability to execute this problematic mission. He asked his company commanders and platoon commanders to immediately identify those people who were unsuitable for the mission and act to have them removed from the battalion. it did not take long for Major Ilan. describes the process of allocating soldiers as random and unstructured: “Though some of the soldiers volunteered for the mission.” Yaron concluded that training the soldiers who he had on hand would not be enough for a successful mission and decided that he must first make an effort to persuade the commanders of the dispatching units to send him their most suitable recruits. 159 Major David. The ‘fish in the net’ syndrome very aptly describes their situation. who served as one of the squad leaders in the battalion. so Yaron requested an immediate meeting with a Brigadier general and reported to him that: “Without the personal involvement and commitment to the mission on the part of the commanders of the dispatching units.” During that meeting. Most of the soldiers. the Brigadier general gave Yaron his personal cell phone number and his permission to call . did not want to participate in the evacuation mission. most did not. Only in a small proportion of cases was the process defined according to any criteria.

Yaron and his commanders were also focusing on all the routine operations required to prepare the new battalion. We are trying to formulate prepared responses but are heading toward the unknown. “This discussion contributed to the coordination of expectations in the platoon. and the battalion was able to replace many of the unsuitable soldiers. describes some of the preparations being made by the company: “We are practicing a great variety of situations—how to remove a crying child from a house. First Lieutenant Benjamin. how to treat people who are eating their last breakfast at home. the Brigadier general sent an important email message to the Air Force’s senior commanders in which he instructed them to give the battalion’s tasks “priority and total preference over any other task required by any other entity. who served as a squad leader in Major Ilan’s company. knowing there will be things that we will have to deal with in the field. Yaron’s reaction was that: “I finally felt direct openness and communication between the senior commander and his subordinates. Each . According to Major David. It was a very good feeling.160 Mastering the Leadership roLe in project ManageMent him whenever Yaron saw fit. The officers continued with practice simulations of possible evacuation scenarios.” The impact of this email was quite significant.” The next day. how to separate a mother from her infant son. The other soldiers were asked to respond to the speaker and to assess the probability that his concerns would come true. While attempting to change the composition of the manpower of his battalion by managing his superiors.” One of the platoon meetings included an exercise in which each soldier was asked to describe the most serious event that he thought might take place during the evacuation. This time the response from the dispatching units was more favorable. using training kits and teams of instructors to boost the knowledge and self-confidence of both the troops and the commanders.

One introduced himself as the settlement’s security coordinator.” The battalion’s group of commanders gradually came together through joint dinners. the father revealed a gun that was tucked in his belt and said. All of these contributed to raising the morale and fostering a sense of belonging among the battalion’s commanders. As Yaron describes: “During the tour. A few days later. but to no avail. The objective of the tour was to become more closely acquainted with the settlement. and meetings in an open and free atmosphere where everyone was invited to listen and voice their thoughts and opinions. At some stage. and the other one was Arik Harpaz.” . “I don’t know how I will act during the evacuation. During the tour. tours of the Gaza Strip settlements to familiarize themselves with the arena. two scowling settlers approached us. 2005. the father of a girl who had been murdered by terrorists along with her friend two years earlier in the settlement. which constituted another step in the internalization process. The event’s primary objective was to introduce the soldiers to the battalion’s various commanders and functions. the company commanders conducted a preliminary tour in the Elei Sinai area. all of the battalion’s soldiers and commanders gathered for the first time at a resort in Ashkelon for a special event: the formal establishment of the battalion. I prefer to give up my private gun for fear that I will do something foolish. I cannot understand how you are willing as IDF soldiers to evict Jews from their land. 161 person had to open up and speak freely about his fears and concerns. which was assigned to the battalion for evacuation. He seemed angry and emotional and refused to shake my hand: ‘I am not willing to shake the hand of an enemy who is coming to evict me from land that is saturated with Liron’s blood and from her room that is full of memories.’” Yaron tried to communicate with him. On May 31. a surprising encounter took place between the battalion’s commanders and two of the settlers.

. the men shook hands with a feeling that there was a place for some hope.. behind each door. It struck me like a lightning bolt. two seemingly contradictory comments that Arik made just before they parted were cause for concern. I understand that you received an order to evacuate. someone who might use his gun if he perceives the soldiers as being too enthusiastic. In each house. Most importantly. there will not be any misunderstanding. I realized how difficult it is to train people to exhibit this behavior in the kind of chaotic situations that we were anticipating. Only following the encounter with Arik did I really comprehend its meaning for us. otherwise. and at the same time.” Yaron recalls: “This was the first time I fully understood the meaning of ‘with determination and sensitivity. my people may find an ‘Arik’—someone who does not want to raise a hand against a soldier. It is nearly .162 Mastering the Leadership roLe in project ManageMent The icy conversation “defrosted” a bit when Yaron and Arik shared memories from their military past and together visited the memorial that Arik had erected at the site of his daughter’s and her friend’s murder.’ even though I’ve used the term countless times during the last month. my family and I will hold a ceremony at Liron’s memorial following which we will quietly evacuate the settlement. When the evacuating troops come to us. and that the squad will be able to cope in the event that there is such a misunderstanding. there will be violence. Suddenly I understood it all. His first comment was: “I admit that the political level ‘duped’ us by sending the army rather than the police.” His second comment was: “I want you to tell your soldiers that we are not the enemy.. Such soldiers must not be here.. The leader of the squad is the only person who can ensure that at each encounter. I expect you not to bring soldiers here who come to this mission with joy and enthusiasm. We will never raise a hand against soldiers. At the end of this emotional meeting. at each door. Yet.

Toward the end of June 2005. the key to achieving a peaceful evacuation is the leaders of the squads. Yaron finally felt satisfied with the makeup of his battalion and was ready to focus on the training.” Given that anticipated role. and he asked for Captains and preferably Majors.” Yaron explained that he could have a successful operation with soldiers of average quality. They should be able to quickly ‘read’ each new situation and demonstrate the appropriate response to accommodate both the evacuees in front of them and their own squad behind them. One more time. and experience. Yaron immediately started focusing on recruiting the best possible junior commanders. I have 24 squads in my battalion. For these situations. you simply need people with proven leadership capabilities whose skills and attitudes have been developed through a lengthy process of selection. He started another campaign. Yet. the first responses from the top commanders were disappointing. Each one of these squad leaders should be capable of functioning like an independent project manager for each new house they are about to evacuate. at the current stage. training. I would be functioning primarily as the head of a multi-project organization during the evacuation itself. but not with squad leaders of average quality: “For my battalion. about six weeks after the May 10 meeting with the Commander of the Blue Brigade. this time asking to replace many of the senior NCOs who currently headed his squads with experienced officers. . I realized that although everybody views me as the commander of a battalion. Yaron persisted and was eventually able to communicate directly with the Air Force Commander. and to get his complete support for his request. and the success of the evacuation is dependent on the quality of the leadership of each one. a Major general. the squad leaders. 163 impossible to develop the capability for such balanced behavior in two months or even in two years.

with one squad simulating the evacuators and the other playing the role of the evacuees. On June 28. For his superiors in the Blue Brigade. whereas for the settlers. At that point. because most soldiers continued with their regular activities at their dispatching bases. the first exercise of the entire battalion took place. Yaron found himself attempting to fulfill a variety of roles. the squads switched roles. which documented the moving encounter with Arik Harpaz. Two days later. boots. for his soldiers (who are not used to field conditions). At the end of the exercise. A film was shown. The objectives of the training were to enhance acquaintance and team-building.164 Mastering the Leadership roLe in project ManageMent The Speedy Implementation of the Evacuation The training. This time the demonstrations had . field accommodations. he was the persistent nagger. for some of the Air Force commanders of the dispatching units. he was a member of the planning team. Prior to the onset of the evacuation. Every half an hour. was conducted only twice a week. On July 1. for the commanders in his battalion. All soldiers and commanders were scheduled to leave their dispatching bases on July 25 for six weeks. as well as to hold lectures and simulations on negotiations and communications. and food supply will be appropriate. making sure that when they arrive in late July. Yaron gave the participants a formal letter of appointment to the battalion and a book with a personal inscription. the battalion commanders and their spouses gathered at Yaron’s house for an evening of acquaintance and team-building. an R&R day was organized for all of the battalion’s soldiers. six weeks before the evacuation date. on whom he was now dependent for the supplies. he was the government. their clothing. which took place primarily according to platoons or squads. The soldiers were divided up into squads. he was the chief supplier. the soldiers had to cope with a string of demonstrations. he was the facilitator of planning and training.

. 2005.. since we were prepared for evacuating people from homes and not for blocking demonstrations.” Another soldier reported: “The platoon commander briefed us and announced that we were part of the ‘sixth circle. and most importantly. when we did not expect it. The exercise was planned to last three weeks and was supposed to simulate the entire course of the evacuation itself. sitting. and in any case we did not know what it was about..000 Israeli soldiers and police troops formed a massive human wall to prevent the 40. we did not fully understand our task until it was over.. The first and the most crucial event took place in the small Israeli village of Kfar Maimon. just outside the Gaza Strip. which was also scheduled to last three weeks. About 20. without any early warning. eating. All of the troops were supposed to remain in the field without leave throughout the whole exercise. and we called this phenomenon ‘the kingdom of uncertainty. just standing.. all of the brigade soldiers were taken for a concentrated training exercise that was defined as the final training in preparation for the onset of the disengagement operation. I had grown accustomed in recent days to tasks that were unclear until the moment of their execution. after which the protesters finally left. but it was tough for most of the soldiers. We were surprised. on July 19. the tense standoff continued.000 protesters from penetrating into the Gaza Strip. as one of them describes it: “They called us from home. we were not prepared to cope with the mundane difficulties of this task. 165 a very clear operational aim: to stop the disengagement by getting tens of thousands of people into the settlements to make it impossible to remove the settlers.. For three days.’” On July 27. it was hot and we were not used to the improvised hygiene conditions in the field. No violence erupted over the course of those three days. sleeping.’ We were not familiar with this terminology..

messages reached the IDF that some families in the Gaza Strip were willing to be evacuated from their homes voluntarily. . On August 3. The operation turned out to be successful. some of the evacuated settlers called the commanders who had participated in the evacuation and thanked them for the sensitivity that had accompanied the process. negotiations with evacuees. The IDF decided to postpone the compulsory evacuation by two days and to carry out an interim operation (code name “giving brothers a hand”) whose objective was to convince the settlers to evacuate their homes voluntarily. Following the failed attempt to flood the settlements with tens of thousands of people through the Kfar Maimon demonstration. The voluntary evacuation continued after midnight on August 17 for settlers who requested a time extension to pack their belongings. IDF officers helped the settlers who chose to evacuate by packing their belongings and carrying them. Although the Gaza Strip had been officially closed to nonresidents since July 13. and although the IDF and the police were largely successful in blocking the attempts to get through. such as the abduction of soldiers by settlers. there were an estimated several thousand youth who were able to infiltrate into the Gaza Strip prior to and following the closure. the breaching of houses in which settlers are holed up. The battalion was deployed along the roads as a living chain together with police and border police troops. Daily seminars were held in the field on various issues.166 Mastering the Leadership roLe in project ManageMent The commanders of the platoons and the squads practiced behaviors under harsh conditions and various scenarios. Yaron’s battalion was rushed to a demonstration similar to that of Kfar Maimon but smaller in scope. On the next day. provided they received a formal request from the State. the battalion was rushed to yet another demonstration. psychologists. and the encircling of areas using a closed human chain. Afterward. The troops also watched professional actors perform simulations of different evacuation scenarios after having received professional guidance from negotiation experts. with lectures by legal experts. and sociologists.


Despite the peaceful nature of the voluntary evacuation, Yaron still had his doubts about what was to come: “Following the success of the voluntary evacuation, some people thought that the rest of the evacuation would also be very smooth. I was not so confident. I could not easily dismiss other possible outcomes. A few days earlier, I had met with the Deputy Commander of my Brigade, a Colonel who had been in charge of the evacuation of settlers from the Gilad Farm, an unauthorized outpost in the West Bank, several years ago. He described the thorough preparations that his troops had undergone, the difficulties they had encountered, and the lessons he had learned. I was fully aware that in the Gilad Farm case, the settlers had been ready to fight, violently if necessary. Yet, I could not forget the numbers. During the first day of the operation, there were already 140 wounded soldiers, none very seriously, but nevertheless wounded. Although my battalion was not going to face unauthorized settlements, we had no idea how many of the illegal infiltrators might have come from places like the Gilad Farm. We could not forget that what we saw as an evacuation, the residents of the settlements saw as an expulsion. Thus, I made all my commanders aware of the need to stay vigilant.” The day of the onset of the forced evacuation finally arrived on August 17. The entire country was tense. The radio and TV news broadcasts went live, and media representatives from Israel and abroad were everywhere. Major David recalls: “It was a heavy feeling of responsibility—an entire nation had its eyes on us. The words of one of the settlers especially became engraved in my head: ‘everyone, evacuators and evacuees, must leave here with a scar so that we never forget what happened here.’ At the beginning, I felt that this attitude was in sharp contrast to our approach that no one should leave even with a small scratch. But then I realized that we were focusing only on the


Mastering the Leadership roLe in project ManageMent

immediate physical damage, while the settler was referring to the long-term psychological consequences. Now I believe that we were both right.” Yaron recounts: “We began passing between the houses, listening to families... the settlement was in a state of great sadness, families sat on the ground like in mourning and wept. The scene was not easy, but we tried to exhibit a lot of patience. I went around monitoring closely a few of the more difficult cases throughout the day and felt very proud of my people. I felt that the squad and platoon leaders were well prepared and really did not need my intervention.” The first day of evacuation went by quite peacefully. At the end of the day, all of the settlers gathered in the settlement’s synagogue for one last prayer. It was a difficult sight, with evacuators and evacuees crying bitterly as one. The national hymn closed the ceremony, and everyone boarded the buses in an orderly fashion. Last-minute searches were performed before leaving the settlement. At the end of each day, Yaron met with his commanders for a debriefing session to discuss the difficulties they had encountered during the day and the solutions they had implemented, to draw conclusions, and to prepare for the next day. Overall, it was widely agreed upon that they were meeting with less violence than expected. Although most residents had eventually agreed to be escorted out by the soldiers, there were some cases in which the troops had to enter the houses and carry out the family members one by one, four soldiers to a person at times, with the settlers screaming and sobbing. The overall sequence by which the settlements were evacuated was based on the “small wins” principle, according to which the IDF progressed from the easy targets to the difficult ones. In a few settlements, outside Yaron’s “jurisdiction,” the infiltrators clashed violently


with the soldiers. The worst confrontation took place on the roof of the Kefar Darom synagogue. After hours of talks, police officers were hoisted by crane onto the roof, where they were attacked by dozens of youths. About a dozen policemen had to be hospitalized after acid was thrown at them. Police arrested dozens of teenagers. On August 22, the last settlement, Netzarim, was evacuated. This officially marked the end of the 35-year-long presence of Israeli settlers in the Gaza Strip. The evacuation of the settlement was successfully accomplished within one week instead of the allocated three weeks. Yaron’s superiors, both at the brigade and the division levels, were pleased with the performance of his battalion. Yaron recounts a moving moment: “On the last day of our mission, we arrived at Elei Sinai to evacuate the last settlement. I went to Arik Harpaz’s home. The stone from his daughter’s memorial and the olive tree planted alongside it had spent the last few days in Arik’s trailer, waiting to leave Gaza with him at any moment. Arik hugged me and commended us on the way we had acted in his personal case. I realized then that throughout the last several months, I had been preoccupied with the important role of leadership on our side—leadership at the national, Air Force, battalion, and squad levels. I had completely missed the crucial role of the leadership of the settlers. We had fought a tactical war: the evacuation of the settlers from the Gaza Strip. The IDF is stronger, and so we won the war. However, at the same time, we had been fighting a more difficult war and a more important, strategic one: making sure that the evacuation would be completed peacefully so that as a nation, we would emerge from it stronger. In this war, we both won.”

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Exploring Space: Shaping Culture by Exploiting Location
by Alexander Laufer, Edward Hoffman, and Don Cohen

“Good Enough” Is Good Enough
The core science group that proposed the NASA Advanced Composition Explorer mission, or ACE, had worked together on other NASA missions and had even built instruments together. Two members of the group were from the Johns Hopkins Applied Physics Laboratory (APL), and they were quite experienced building the type of spacecraft that they thought they needed, so the group proposed using a spacecraft built by APL. The initial unsolicited proposal of the group was not accepted, but it raised their visibility. When an opportunity came along to propose a new mission five years later, they proposed ACE as an Explorer-class mission to be run out of NASA’s Goddard Space Flight Center. Patience paid off, and in 1991 their proposal was selected for funding. Dr. Edward Stone, principal investigator at the California Institute of Technology (Caltech), recalls: “When it came down to who would be the leader of our group, all eyes fell on me. I was the Project Scientist on Voyager, a high-profile NASA mission, and I was considered a known quantity by the Agency. People knew how I did things and how I managed science. They also knew that Voyager had been going well.”

the project manager from Goddard Space Flight Center—was more than 2. we always kept the appointment. Don describes the risk involved in his decision: . and APL did not like it at all. Stone and I set up a schedule to talk with each other on the phone every week. and the challenge on ACE was working with 20 different science institutions spread out across the United States and parts of Europe. You might say the spacecraft itself was about the only thing not in the air. we looked at our budget and it looked as though we were going to exceed our total resources by $22 million. I thought it was crucial to the success of the project that Dr. I responded by putting the bulk of the money into trying to identify the key risks in the development of the science instruments and mitigating these to the best extent that we could at the earliest stage possible. and of the nine on ACE.” Don Margolies found very early that he had to address the money issue: “Before we had been confirmed. he could be on it right away. To do this.500 miles.” The greatest uncertainty on a science mission is in the development of the instruments. Don describes how they addressed this problem: “Dr. much of what was about to unfold was still up in the air. Even the distance between the two primary players—Dr. Stone know everything that was going on—and if something happened that involved the development of the instruments. Stone and Don Margolies. five were new. I had to hold back spacecraft development at APL.” Don describes his dilemma: “I had the choice of spreading the money among all the players or focusing on the elements that posed the greatest risks on the project. which was not a popular decision. In the early stages of the project. The word came back from NASA Headquarters that they wouldn’t allow us to continue with that kind of overrun. Even if it was just to say that the weather was nice in California and there was nothing much happening here at Goddard.172 Mastering the Leadership roLe in project ManageMent The group has grown.

The only way to do that was to say what we would do if we got in trouble. and as it turned out.” However. and if so. and how much each would save. and testing—were forced to go back and ask themselves. the other projects would have to work with what was left. I wanted Headquarters to make a commitment to us in writing that they would give us stable funding. Set your requirements and stick to those requirements. You’re never right 100 percent of the time. they were able to catch up. ground operation. spacecraft. “How much can I save if I take out a circuit board? Will I lose any performance by doing that. who was in favor of having a de-scope plan: “I knew that if we were going to get the . I knew I could be shooting myself in the foot if they were not able to recover. you have to go with your judgment. and if one mission sucked up most of the funding. Once you meet the requirements. Stone. Thus. Scientists in every area—instruments. Don understood that money issues still had to be addressed in a more comprehensive and profound way: “What I set out to do was to establish a mutual agreement with everyone that ‘good enough’ is good enough. The way to seal the agreement was to assure them that we were able to control the program and not run over cost. spend no additional money to make it better. integration. We were willing to commit to a fixed price if they would guarantee stable funding. APL would be able to catch up. how much?” Don explains his rationale for the de-scoping: “ACE was part of the Explorer program.Chapter 7 • exploring SpaCe: Shaping Culture by exploiting loCation 173 “In holding APL back by three to six months. Still.” Don discussed the whole thing with Dr. when each would have to be taken.” So Don asked everyone to identify what his or her de-scopes would be if necessary. and at the time. the Explorer program budget was one big pot of money. Experience counted for a lot here. But I believed that even with a slow start.

and we probably would not have been confirmed. Class-D missions were reliable and cheap projects. starting from scratch.’ That’s fine.” Don describes how the de-scope plan was carried out: “As we were defining the de-scopes on the payload side. and even higher risk could be afforded.’ it had to be Stone who sold it to them. what would be the impact if any single instrument failed? Is there another instrument that can provide similar data? What if two of them failed in different combinations?’ Realizing the amount of redundancy we had. ‘I know that’s going to do it. B. it looked to me like we could tolerate some failures in the payload and still have a successful mission. but it’s probably not the way to optimize the mission.174 Mastering the Leadership roLe in project ManageMent scientists to buy-in on ‘stopping at good enough. which was all about the level of risk involved. so everything was done in order to make it 100 percent reliable. NASA classified missions in terms of A. we looked at each and every instrument and its capability.” Dr. enough whatever. . where failure would mean a national catastrophe. Scientists prefer to draw a large circle around their requirements because they know somewhere in there is what they need. We said: ‘All right. and it is easiest just to draw the circle large—meaning enough mass. and we found considerable overlap in terms of the capability of many instruments. I dare say ACE would have been a much different project. Without his help. Class-C missions were less expensive to begin with. C. Stone gave Don his total support: “Some of the scientists felt that we should not have to make any compromises on requirements. and D. and risk was a little more acceptable.” ACE was classified as a C mission. Class-B missions had a slightly lower profile. enough power. Class-A missions were on the order of the Space Shuttle. if you can afford anything you want. such as small satellite rockets. because then you can say.

” Headquarters agreed. ‘Al.’ It was a question that I had not considered before. If we could get away with flying a set of Class-D instruments. So I added. for example. and Headquarters was willing to guarantee stable funding.’ He then asked. ‘but I strive for it. Most importantly. that seemed to startle him. ‘Well. this would simplify our job tremendously. They looked at all the redundancy and said. Stone selected Allan Frandsen to serve as the payload manager. Dr.’ I admitted. “Yes. and still meet the ultimate mission requirements? We determined that the answer was “yes.Chapter 7 • exploring SpaCe: Shaping Culture by exploiting loCation 175 With all the redundancy in our instrument suite. it made sense to dual-classify ourselves. at the California Institute of Technology. Stone said. Could we go to a lower level of reliability testing. Stone: “During my interview when I was applying for the job of payload manager on ACE. Dr. ‘Have you ever reached this state?’ ‘No. we were able to commit to a fixed price.’ Ironically enough. give me an idea of your management style.” You may fly a ClassD instrument suite on this Class-C spacecraft. then I’ve anticipated all the problems and taken necessary actions to head them off.’ . on the other side of the continent. the first descriptive term that comes to mind is the word tranquility. Nurturing the Culture of Location In the meantime. ‘I guess what I mean is that if the situation is tranquil and the project is running smoothly. Allan recalls his first meeting with Dr. I thought about it for a few seconds and then answered. I started to think that maybe we could get away with dual-classifying ourselves.

the situation can turn to manure in a hurry if a personnel matter arises.. With the right team in place. one has to establish and maintain the flexibility to take appropriate actions when needed.anticipate. the manager’s job is likely to have fewer day-to-day problems. ‘A’ would signify anticipate.. what is supposed to happen next—but all too often it doesn’t.anticipate. as well as being less stressful than it otherwise would have been.” Another crucial ingredient for project success is identifying and recruiting the best people to do the job. a good project manager already knows. and sideways. at least in general terms. So it is well worth the effort up front to carve out the time and generate the enthusiasm to build a good team.. the “A” in the ABCs of project management could just as well stand for “anticipate. a manager needs to establish and monitor channels of information flow in order to foster communication between participants. Now there is also an “s” at the end of the ABCs of project management. So what are the alternatives? Are there sensible workarounds? What can I do now to lay the groundwork or facilitate matters should something go wrong? These and other questions make up the ongoing process of anticipation.176 Mastering the Leadership roLe in project ManageMent Tranquility is probably an overstatement. Of course. downward. but in running a project. I would say that despite your best-laid plans.. To lead a project effectively. Does that have any significance? Well. Once a project is up and running. which is the “C” in the ABCs of project management.” . And because it is an ongoing process. Take the time to communicate upward. the “B” in the ABCs of project management. I have always tried to anticipate problems. So another important part of a manager’s job is to sustain this prized team you have recruited.” Allan gives us insight into what he considers to be the ‘ABCs of project management’: “If I had to write down the ABCs of project management.

as Dr. Caltech was the perfect place for a relatively small. Whether I would be able to continue as the ACE PI was not my decision. For these JPL technical specialists. there is a noticeable cultural difference between the two institutions.” At the time that Dr. Short of choosing the wrong people or having inadequate resources. I think. at times even for the head of the team. “Do you want me to step down?” The answer was. Allan preferred keeping his small permanent team and recruiting additional technical expertise from JPL as needed. Obviously. It was up to NASA Headquarters. but I thought that I could still be an effective PI. I would not be able to spend a lot of my time on ACE.Chapter 7 • exploring SpaCe: Shaping Culture by exploiting loCation 177 Indeed. being given a temporary task in support of ACE was both a new challenge for . I had been asked to become director of JPL. From my vantage point. Stone came to realize: “About the time that I was interviewing Al. I asked. “No. I handed off my responsibilities as chief engineer in NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory (JPL) science division and moved to an office at the Caltech campus. with just three others besides himself plus an administrative assistant. Stone was relocating from Caltach to JPL. sustaining the team might be a challenge.” Allan’s core team was small. They were responsible for developing all nine of the scientific instruments and for making sure that they remained on schedule and within budget. Allan Frandsen was also moving. Allan explains that it is all about the culture of location: “When I accepted Dr. than the wrong operating environment. we want you as PI. low-cost ($50 million) payload like ours to flourish. Stone’s offer to head up the ACE payload development. in a dynamic environment. but in the opposite direction. “Although Caltech is only seven miles from JPL. nothing will torpedo a project quicker. however.

Although this approach was not always welcomed by the JPL managers.178 Mastering the Leadership roLe in project ManageMent honing their skills as well as a refreshing assignment in a new operating environment. The timing was fortuitous because the project came along at a point when the upper management at JPL was yearning for closer working-level relationships with Caltech. “Because my team members would be working primarily with scientists and instrument developers scattered across 20 universities and labs. and that’s not what was required for this job. I was concerned about getting people who were too imbued with the JPL way. I needed to find the right mix of talents and attitude—people who could flourish in a university environment. they would be getting an opportunity to spread their wings and be innovative. Their whole career has been about following the rules. Some people want to go in a familiar direction. one can get to the point where you can’t think any other way. but you have to know when the rules need to . often the one of least resistance. Allan elaborates on the criteria for selecting his team members: “In searching for the right talent at JPL to staff the ACE project. it succeeded as long as the specialists’ absence from JPL assignments could be worked around and the arrangement was mutually beneficial. Not everyone liked what Allan had in mind. After working on big projects for years and years. who understandably had other priorities and responsibilities. However. Following rules is fine. too hidebound from big projects. Stone was to become the next JPL director. so I was looking for people who were a little bit out of the mainstream. The way I saw it. by the time it was announced that Dr. and they feel comfortable doing that. because no staffing arrangement exactly like what he was trying to put in place had ever been tried before. Flexibility was more important than sheer brain power. any remaining resistance to the idea of enmeshing JPL staff in a campus research group seemed to fade.

the people building the spacecraft. This was especially true between Johns Hopkins Applied Physics Laboratory (APL) and NASA.” Mary Chiu. “We went round and round about it until finally I said ‘Okay. I tried to explain the ramifications of such a change and the fact that we had not intended the system to be reprogrammable. Their position was that newer data handling systems provided a reprogrammable system. if you want to give us a change order. tailored.” Although solid foundations for good relationships were being put into place between the payload team and the scientists on the West coast. As Don Margolies so aptly puts it: “If Goddard said the sky was blue. To change to a different data handling system would have required a major restructuring of the spacecraft’s design. So I sought out people at JPL who would not be afraid to deviate from the rules. APL would say it was pink. With all the really neat things being done on other spacecraft. especially on an R&D project designed and executed within a university environment where most rules are flexible and processes generally adaptable to circumstances. they asked. relationships were not quite so harmonious on the East coast. meaning that if one instrument shut down you could send more data to the other instruments.Chapter 7 • exploring SpaCe: Shaping Culture by exploiting loCation 179 be bent. fine.’ but I made it clear that they couldn’t change the requirements this radically and . the last thing you want to do is ignore them. why were we getting this ‘old fashioned’ data handling system? For my team at APL. program manager for spacecraft development at Johns Hopkins Applied Physics Laboratory. this was no small matter. until some people at Goddard suggested that we use a different data handling format. or even broken. “But when NASA wants to know why you can’t do something. describes one example of the tension between the two organizations: “We thought everything was settled.

’ We went . which upset many of us. but the accounting sheets we were getting didn’t provide specific enough information to verify it. the flap about the data handling system passed quickly enough. “Mary assured me that wasn’t the case. and I noticed that new people were jumping onto ACE. Mary Chiu did not want me talking to her leads without her being there. my visitor’s badge had been pulled. and when she found out I had done that she got very upset. but it sent a strong message as to how she ran her program. and she kept saying. Next time I went out there. and we ended up sticking with the original system. “Hi Mary. This was met with several comments intimating that the people on my team were not a ‘can-do’ group. ‘It’s going to cost me more money on the contract if I have to go to a special accounting system. As it turned out.” John describes how another dispute between NASA and APL finally led to a peaceful reconciliation: “I needed more detailed accounting data than we were getting from the standard government form the contractors had to fill out each month so that we could tell how much money subsystems had spent. observatory manager at Goddard Space Flight Center. while I was visiting APL. It was a good six months later before I felt I could say.180 Mastering the Leadership roLe in project ManageMent still maintain the original cost and schedule. presumably charging to the project. I asked her for more detailed accounting data. recalls that it took a long time to develop a good rapport with Mary Chiu and her team: “Early in the program. I took an opportunity to visit some of the subsystem leads. There was no problem getting me reinstated. How are you doing? Let’s go have a cup of coffee.” John Thurber. One of the things I was concerned about was that APL had recently lost a large contract with the Navy.

’ they don’t just mean real estate.’ I said.” Don Margolies compares the different attitudes of APL and NASA: “APL is a proud organization. We expect to be partners with you. ‘This works. ‘Give us the requirements. they will tell you. Don underscores the value of location to project success: “Fortunately. and then. Having that kind of proximity to each other made all the difference in the world toward cultivating a partnership between our organizations. and get out of the way and leave us alone.’” Despite their differences. however. If you ask them to describe the way they like to work under contract. “After that. but we’re not going to leave you alone. give us the money. we developed a much better rapport. and everything worked out fine. I gave up asking. and she never caught any more grief from me about who was charging to the program.Chapter 7 • exploring SpaCe: Shaping Culture by exploiting loCation 181 around about that for a few turns. Why don’t I just give them to you? Is this adequate?’ I looked them over. one day she just handed me a brown envelope and said. and they had everything I needed. the distance between Goddard and APL is only about 20 minutes by car. Let me tell you. the geographical proximity between the two organizations enabled frequent meetings and communication. Every month I got a brown envelope from her. . ‘Here are my internal sheets. ‘We’ll give you the money. when they talk about ‘location. “To my surprise. finally. location. I got what I needed. My being able to get out to APL in a few minutes and Mary coming over to Goddard went a long way toward establishing a trustful relationship. location.’ But NASA’s way of doing business is considerably different from APL’s. We say to our contractors.

a ruse to take control of his instrument. “I’m not sure that the relationship between APL and Goddard. “One of the coinvestigators at Caltech. My Flight Ops team knew the ground system we were using inside and out. something that was usually the sole responsibility of the science teams. Almost any help we offered to make his life easier was. My staff would then get up and talk about the status of the instruments. but I can’t think of anything we did on the project that was more valuable. We at least reached a point where it seemed that when one of us said something. between Mary and myself even.” Frank Snow. should get involved in the data analysis after launch. train the people out at Caltech on how to use it. is that what you want.182 Mastering the Leadership roLe in project ManageMent “I held staff meetings at Goddard every week. and I brought my Goddard team with me. Mary was always invited. Each of Mary’s subsystem leads stood up and gave a status report on their subsystems. however. So I offered our help. confirms Don’s conclusions regarding the importance of proximity and face-to-face communication: “It occurred to me that the Flight Operations team. he sent . total harmony? A little friction is good for a project. and she attended most weeks. As appreciation for my offer. I also held monthly meetings at APL. the other one could take it to the bank. ground system development. People weren’t afraid to say what was happening or to make mistakes because they understood that our working philosophy was just to fix mistakes and move on. was ever 100 percent harmonious—but then. was terribly suspicious of the Goddard project office. I don’t know how to put the value of those meetings into dollars and cents. ground system and flight operations manager at Goddard Space Flight Center. and so forth.. which I managed. and I thought that they should. at the very least. he believed..

Moreover. which lasted for the rest of the project. Despite the need for the two systems engineers from APL and Caltech to work tightly together. and then reassured him that no one in the project office was trying to take anything away from him or from Caltech. I told him that I would put it into the operational plan to move the total operations of the spacecraft over to Caltech after launch. empathized with him.Chapter 7 • exploring SpaCe: Shaping Culture by exploiting loCation 183 me a blistering email that basically said. “Clearly. . He allowed the Flight Ops team to come to Caltech and provide training in the ground system. we were actually interested in expanding Caltech’s responsibilities to include flight operations. if they were agreeable. Maybe I’d have better luck in a faceto-face meeting. As a matter of fact. I think I can even say that this was the beginning of a fruitful relationship. “I went there and listened to his concerns. we sent someone immediately and we made it clear that we were willing to do so at the drop of a hat. I don’t recall after this ever getting another 300-word email from him of the ‘no-thank-you-and-please-go-away’ variety. in 300 words no less. ‘Hell no!’ At that point. “He never formally acknowledged it.” A Gentle Touch One of the key persons in an engineering and technology project is the systems engineer. face-to-face communication went a long way toward dispelling his suspicions about my intentions. Whenever he asked for help. In fact. I decided to fly across the country to Caltech to talk with him. but I think he saw that what we were offering was not such a bad idea after all. they initially found it extremely difficult to agree on appropriate work methods.

Initially. Each university or institution where an instrument came from had a different culture. At APL. It was close to impossible to get uniform compliance across all of the subsystems. his counterpart at APL: “ACE was my first experience with finding cultural differences between institutions that actually manifested themselves in heated differences of opinion at the engineering level. payload systems engineer at the California Institute of Technology. On numerous occasions she challenged my opinions. two equals sort of battling each other. Judi and I worked hard at building good communication. “Judi and I are both headstrong and intelligent—and used to winning arguments. I think it took us the better part of the first year to realize that this was dumb. but we found a way to work through things and resolve our differences. “Vibration specification was a good example where APL wanted to do it one way and we wanted to do it another. Judi could say. I’m making this sound easy—it wasn’t. “Although our relationship started out rocky.’ but I had to tailor specifications to each of the instruments. and each had its own way of doing things. Here we were. everybody has to test hardware to 12. Judi von Mehlem and I tried to pretend that our differences didn’t exist or that they would magically go away. APL had a . but there were a number of times where our differences came to a head. and I had to go back and sharpen my pencil and come back with sound reasoning and a better technical argument. earning Judy’s respect on technical issues became a challenge that I found motivating. describes his relationship with Judi von Mehlem. We had to ask. For me.184 Mastering the Leadership roLe in project ManageMent Gerald Murphy.5 g’s. ‘Okay. ‘Why are we battling each other when we’re both trying to get the job done?’ It took a while to understand one another’s point of view. “Being the systems engineer for payload was nothing like Judi’s job on the spacecraft side.

’ “ACE challenged me intellectually. but this is also what made the project so rewarding. They told Judi. When we couldn’t come to an agreement. We knew how delicate the payload sensors were. we earned each other’s respect.’ we said. you don’t really have to worry about the payload. Allan Frandsen describes the challenge and the unique way in which his team approached it: “One aspect of my job as payload manager involved keeping track of what the different science teams were working on and offering help where it was needed. but they thought they did. At first it seemed as though many of the scientists. so we specified a lower vibration test to avoid damage. What I think we learned was this: the fact that I did things this way. rather than what they seemed to expect us to be—a troop of .” The Caltech team was faced with a different challenge in its work with the scientists and instrument developers. ‘You don’t have to worry about the payload. it is payload’s fault. Their specification was based on their institutional precedents. and Judy did them that way. Even though we might argue about things and agree to disagree. which we felt were overly conservative in the area of vibration test levels. “The challenge to my team was getting these science groups to regard us as partners or as people who could help them. or their technical staff. and Goddard did them yet another way did not mean that any of our ways was the one true way. Our environmental test program for the payload was less conservative. Goddard had to intervene. “‘Well. and we didn’t make our differences personal.Chapter 7 • exploring SpaCe: Shaping Culture by exploiting loCation 185 specification that they wanted us to use to qualify all instrument boxes. it’s not going to be your fault. and—we thought—more appropriate. If something in the payload breaks. and they have to deal with it. weren’t certain about how safe it was to confide in us.

we didn’t press him to let us get more involved. “A lot of it just came down to working hard with the coinvestigators at solving development problems and building their trust in the process.” . there was a designer who held things very close to his chest. The word ‘audit’ can put a terrified look on people’s faces. At first. we still had to meet our requirements and satisfy the Goddard project office. in addition to labs in Switzerland and Germany. It was that kind of gentle touch. until we arranged to help him solve a power supply problem. of NASA practices to fit the university environment. I can recall my visiting reliability and quality assurance manager walking down the hall at one university with his arm over a technician’s shoulder. asking. When you spend days and nights with people. ‘How’s it going? What’s happening here?’ “All the time. “I enjoyed telling people about how my payload team adapted the spirit. Understand. There were 9 instruments and 20 coinvestigators on ACE working at various universities and a few government labs across the United States. if not the letter. a gentle touch paid off by keeping everyone working together toward the same goal: delivery of a performing payload. which eventually changed peoples’ perceptions about our role on the project. “At one university in particular. His boss. we could barely get him to acknowledge that we were in the room with him. They also knew that we could bring precious outside resources to bear in addressing special problems. that technician never realized that this was part of a work-process audit. on time and within budget. and you suffer with them. so we waited for him to approach us—and when he did. recognized the contribution we had made and figured that we might be able to help solve a sensor head problem as well. “There was no pressure. a coinvestigator.186 Mastering the Leadership roLe in project ManageMent requirements enforcers. but again. they begin to realize that you’re on the same team.

even if an instrument had a good ‘design. We in the payload management office took the approach of asking each team. I had never been on a project before where this was done. we decided to have implementation reviews.Chapter 7 • exploring SpaCe: Shaping Culture by exploiting loCation 187 Gerald Murphy illustrates what a tall order that was for ACE. and you declare success when you are ‘close enough. Typically. Few project managers accomplish that. what was going to be ‘good enough.’ and not knowing what we could do to help the university teams build them. you can’t foresee all the problems you’ll run up against. is trying to get the project completed on schedule for the money you have. despite what they might tell you. “When I use the word ‘implementation. You haven’t built this thing before.’ In short. where they needed to produce five instruments that were either entirely new or considerably modified from earlier models: “The biggest challenge in managing scientific instrument development. In point of fact. “Some of our problems early in the project derived from not understanding exactly what the instruments were intended to do—that is. In our case. And I don’t just mean taking a look at schedules . ‘What do you need in order to get your job done. but it turned out to be the single most valuable review we had from the point of view of project success. many of a project’s problems are not caused by design flaws—they are caused by implementation flaws. or any new technology development for that matter. the job must be dynamically managed. and it’s easy to understand why— technology development doesn’t have a predictable path.’ its implementation needed to be executed smoothly. You know the result you want. so how the heck do you know how much it’s going to cost? And besides. and how can we make that happen?’ “To address these concerns.’ I mean it in the broadest sense—implementation of the design and manufacture of the instrument. reviews are design-focused. “It just doesn’t happen.

I also mean looking to see if you have the right team—a team that is assembled in such a way that the lines of responsibility make sense. For example. Do you have margin for error? What are the technical risks and what is your plan to deal with them? Who is responsible for what? How many engineers do you have on the job. We sat around the table together. “The size and composition of the review teams were tailored to the places we went. The implementation review happened only once at each site. We would grab somebody from JPL who could solve that in a week instead of letting the instrument team spin their wheels for six months. with a balance across the different disciplines. If it occurred too early. let’s say that we knew a team was having a problem making their detector meet launch load requirements. and do they have the right experience? “For the ACE payload. we would typically bring people from Goddard who were good at understanding resources and estimating actual costs. including the payload group. and figured out how we were going to get the instrument built and delivered. listened to presentations. The process was labor intensive because we camped out onsite for three days. The teams were usually made up of between five and eight people. you would already be buried in trying to solve the problems of the day instead of being ahead of the wave. it was not beneficial. but not to be overly optimistic and fool ourselves. and interfaces that are clear and easily defined. if it was too late.” . It was always tricky putting together just the right team. but the timing had to be just right. we traveled around to each instrument developer. In addition. “The point of the implementation review was to prevent problems from occurring later by trying to get our arms around the planning from the start. We found the holes and looked for ways to plug them—together. We tried to be efficient. but we managed to find the expertise that we needed. on the other hand.188 Mastering the Leadership roLe in project ManageMent and money.

The way Al ran the payload office was to try and be helpful to the instrument teams. The thing was not to try and oversee what they were doing. prescribe rules to be followed. Stone stresses the need for collaboration until the very end: “After environmental testing was fully completed on ACE. APL wanted them to stay on the spacecraft. the scientists wanted to take off all the instruments for recalibration. reminds us of Allan Frandsen’s interview when he was applying for the job of payload manager and how he had used the word “tranquility” to describe his management style: “Al showed remarkably good judgment in dealing with the instrument teams. I wouldn’t have used that term myself. These were all people who had built instruments before. they should have been relatively easy to . and expect things done a certain way. “Obviously that wasn’t Al’s style. Having dealt with NASA before.Chapter 7 • exploring SpaCe: Shaping Culture by exploiting loCation 189 Implementation reviews accomplished one other thing: They set the tone for the management of the project and established a team relationship. Stone. Because of the way the instruments were mounted on the ACE spacecraft. Dr. They weren’t going to pay attention to somebody telling them to do things they knew were unnecessary. But meanwhile. their tendency right away was to think that someone coming from JPL would try to oversee what they were doing. and that is how I interpreted what he said about his management style being one that strived for tranquility.” When “Good Enough” Is Not Good Enough Dr. but what it indicated to me was that he wanted to work with people rather than to direct them. demand a lot of paperwork. the principal investigator at Caltech.

but I wanted him to understand the importance of recalibration for the scientists. It comes back to ‘What’s good enough?’ The question was ‘How much does taking off the instruments increase risk?’ In my view. The job of the project manager was to balance the interests of the engineers and the scientists so that we ended up with an optimal system. right? Normally. not calibrating them properly increases risk as well—the risk of not getting good science. I would take the pragmatic approach: ‘Your instruments are working. I was going to stick my neck out and guarantee Don that the instruments would be back on time for reintegration. don’t fix it. Reintegration.” Don Margolies explains his decision and his considerations: “If approved. I know.190 Mastering the Leadership roLe in project ManageMent remove and reinstall. but I recognized that it was still his decision to make. and we were coming in $30 million under budget—amazing. it would have been the first time on any NASA project that I know of when all the instruments on an observatory came off for rework or calibration after the full range of environmental tests and then were reintegrated at the launch center without the benefit of an observatory environmental retest. we had more than adequate slack in the schedule. Why do it? We had gone through our environmental test programs successfully and everything seemed to be operational. Don had the ultimate responsibility to decide what risks to take.’ On the other hand. ‘What can we do to make the science better?’ . while it was certainly a doable task. and this came down to explaining what I considered to be the broad view of the issue. “Several people on the project thought I was crazy. There were real engineering issues. We were in a position to ask. If it’s not broken. would be no small matter for Mary Chiu and APL. and good enough is good enough. “As the project manager.

but not without first undergoing an independent review of our plans. “There were still other stakeholders whom I had to convince. So there really was a net benefit to the science by doing this. If the scientists had the opportunity to tweak and calibrate their instruments on the ground. Clearly. they didn’t mince words. Ultimately. The orderly return of the instruments didn’t happen exactly as we had planned. you are crazy. Mary was a key part of the planning process. But I knew I was going to hear this. ACE. the alternative was to calibrate again in orbit. especially in terms of what the impact would be on her team. I wouldn’t have agreed to this had the APL team said it was an impossible risk. For those who had only completed marginal calibration prior to testing. It happened because people were willing to work with one another to make it happen. so to speak. “And so it all worked out in the end. ‘Don. was a major precondition for going through with it.’ they told me. When I approached them about this. and I was prepared to explain. In order to provide a proper return on the $100 million NASA investment.” . “But how do you know the risk is low enough to put an instrument back on without retesting it under vibration? That was the question my management put to me. one answer to the question was better calibration. they would most likely get better science in space. an Office of Space Science mission. had to perform on all cylinders. and it’s not as precise as on the ground. Calibration in orbit takes time. and the one I was most concerned about was Mary Chiu because it was APL’s responsibility to reintegrate the instruments. and getting her buy-in.Chapter 7 • exploring SpaCe: Shaping Culture by exploiting loCation 191 “Given that we had the schedule. but due to the skill and dedication of the APL team. we reintegrated the instruments at the launch site. I was able to get management to buy off on the decision. given that we had the money. albeit a reluctant buy-in. We talked about it exhaustively.

’ no matter what the job. And that is the word I like to use.5 million km from the latter. I read them because I’m still curious about how the mission is going. people who had a passion for their jobs. and I enjoyed it very much. “But when I think back on ACE. It’s always fun working with people like that. I’m happy that the ground system is working so well and the scientists are getting lots of good data. The spacecraft is still in generally good condition and has enough fuel to maintain its orbit until the year 2024. my memories aren’t of the technical sort. I still get reports probably on a monthly basis from both the ground system team and the scientists. which lies between the sun and the Earth at a distance of some 1. They all displayed ‘passion. They’re of the fun I had working with such excellent people. sums up the overall feeling about working on ACE: “Though I’ve long since moved on to other projects. . the ground system and flight operations manager at Goddard Space Flight Center.192 Mastering the Leadership roLe in project ManageMent Frank Snow.” The ACE spacecraft is currently operating in an orbit.

. a 70-year-old company and one of the ten largest industrial companies in Israel. That dairy would replace three veteran dairies around the country. at Alon Tavor. initiated a major project that called for switching to a new “specialized dairy” organizational structure. and Dora Cohenca-Zall Shifting from Park to Drive Tnuva Food Industries Ltd. would cover about 60. The constructed facilities for the factory. The equipment was linked together by more than 80 kilometers of stainless steel 193 . No longer would five small. each with its own production specialty. relying on logistics centers for distribution. Haifa. yogurt. and so on). and Tel Aviv. three large. in Jerusalem. was slated to be the largest dairy in the Middle East and among the largest ones in Europe. and infrastructure. which would then be closed down. One of these three new dairies was slated to specialize in cup products (cottage cheese.000 square meters. modern dairies would be built.8 Building a Dairy Plant: Accelerating Speed Through Splitting and Harmonizing by Alexander Laufer. The new dairy. Jeffrey Russell. systems. including the buildings. local dairies each produce and market all of its dairy products to the local buyers. Rather.

and as such it suffered from a multitude of technological and organizational problems. but the GEA engineers from Germany were still at the very beginning of designing the equipment layout. the head of one of the branches of a large project management company. and that Tnuva’s contractual obligation to provide the construction designers with the basic data needed to begin designing the structures in three months would not be fulfilled: “In order to design the product flow in the plant. Zvika’s counterpart who served as the project manager for equipment and processes. felt helpless: “I understood the needs of the construction team. two main groups of engineers are engaged: equipment and processes and construction. All the equipment .194 Mastering the Leadership roLe in project ManageMent pipe and 7. it was a complex project.” Zvika describes the typical engineering and construction work required for dairy plants: “In designing and building a complex dairy plant. The results of the basic equipment design were meant to be the basis for the construction planners in designing the physical structure of the various buildings in the plant. It also suffered from the physical and cultural distance between the professionals leading the project at Tnuva in Israel and their counterparts at GEA in Germany. a German company. Tavor.000 automated valves.000-square-meter site at the foot of Mt. GEA. was hired by Tnuva to lead the planning and construction of its new dairy. The equipment and processes group is responsible for designing the production and transportation equipment and arranging it in the optimal way. all on a 130. and supplies. approximately 12 kilometers from Nazareth. Benjamin.” However. from the finished products to packaging and storage. Zvika. and to produce and install the basic equipment. was chosen in the beginning of 1998. and we couldn’t get any information from them. systems. Zvika discovered that the equipment and processes design was still in its infancy. During his first months on the job. in the fall of 1999. Following a thorough selection process.

” which. 195 and processes engineering was done outside Israel. with the consent of Tnuva. to switch from planning to implementation. In the interests of enhancing responsiveness. a few people seemed to be simply enjoying this period of planning the “dairy of dreams. most of all. the primary source of the prolonged delay was the feeling among many key people within Tnuva that it was not time to converge. The construction engineers and architects were almost all local. Despite the lack of information from the German designers. Moreover. and drainage.” Beyond all of the logistical problems encountered in getting the project off the ground. He felt that the prolonged delay in the beginning of the design and engineering of the facilities was unhealthy for the project. that is. Although the CEO of the dairy division. he selected people that he knew from his own past experience to be competent. Ofer. as well as for outdoor plot development. judging by the constant stream of changes they were requesting from GEA. responsive. marketing. it seems that they had not accepted the decision made by the division months earlier to freeze the defined scope and requirements of the project. sewer. For the most part. and. To make matters worse. kept demanding strict adherence to the agreed-upon schedule. Thus. Zvika primarily recruited designers with offices in the northern part of Israel . electricity. trustful. Zvika thought that it was time to move ahead. the ongoing fights between technology. The construction group is responsible for the building design and its systems. he was of the opinion that starting before all open issues are resolved is the best way to ensure their speedy resolution. communications. including air conditioning. among other things. Moreover. and operations made it difficult to see that they even all belonged to the same division. refrigeration. water. he started forming the design engineering team. and in a way even legitimized the delay. mostly in Germany. including roads and landscaping. included learning from the best examples worldwide and necessarily entailed taking quite a few trips abroad.

Tnuva went along with Zvika and kept the price level fair and often favorable to the designers. The process of forming the design engineering team served as a crucial trigger for highlighting fundamental issues. In the end. However. thereby enabling them to demand a particularly high quality of service. with its vast piping and many silos that projected high above the building. the managers were still unable to reach a decision as to the placement of the energy center. However. it became evident to everybody that some of the most basic decisions. such as the location of the various buildings on the plot. the CEO of the dairy division. the milk arrival area was placed in the south—a decision that actually determined the positioning of the production building and was supposed to open the door for the rest of the design work to proceed. which would provide a shorter distance for the piping (and save a loss of energy through that piping). Ofer. On the other hand. For example. arguing that allowing the milk trucks access to loading and unloading on the southern side would facilitate the material flow through the plant. and the main entrance of the plant would face south.196 Mastering the Leadership roLe in project ManageMent so that frequent visits to the site would not be a problem. it seemed that too many functionaries at Tnuva still did not feel the pressure to move forward. the manufacturing division recommended the opposite solution. had not been finalized. The debate was around whether the energy center should be placed near the entrance. would face north. The architect wanted to position the production building so that the milk arrival area. During the negotiations. the strong winds on the southern side might cause the ash coming out of the chimneys to blow toward the area where the milk . and his team of senior managers came to the conclusion that the beauty of the plant would truly come through via the “forest” of piping and giant stainless steel tanks in the front of the plant. with a “clean” view free of piping and storage tanks. For example. south of the production building. despite the time that had gone by. which define the plant’s reason for existing.

Without these plans. I felt that maintaining momentum was the key. even before GEA had submitted its equipment layout. As he explained: “I understood that we had to start construction as soon as possible. This decision was critical. and at times a project simply cannot recover from these delays. they felt that the constant delays and the stalemates were just unavoidable. I came to the conclusion that without taking a . area size. and an early start. less obvious. one by GEA. reason. column placement. there was another. at least with some activities. because it affected the placement of all the other structures in the dairy plant. By March 2000. It was my experience that this state of affairs is very unhealthy. because the equipment setup is what determines the final dimensions and requirements of the facilities in such terms as weight. and plumbing. There were more than a few people. 197 would be delivered. and I worked hard to find ways to advance the project. Yet. By that time. it was clear that GEA was not even ready with the preliminary equipment plans. would enhance our chances of overcoming at least some of the delay and thus open the possibility of finishing the entire project on time. However. I felt that three separate plants were being designed: one by Tnuva. the debate went on and on without any clear closure. Zvika had to accept the painful conclusion that the only two key people who were really concerned about the constantly delayed timetable were Ofer and Zvika himself: “More than once. we were late. thus contaminating the main side of the production building. and one by my team. rather. who had not embraced any sense of urgency. Why? First. to start the design and actual construction only after all major decisions regarding equipment are finalized—would be wrong. it would be difficult to proceed with the design of the facilities.” Zvika realized that attempting to proceed through the typical process—that is. both at Tnuva and at GEA.

it was time to review the entire picture. Zvika’s team would have all the needed information from GEA. Many visits were carried out in other leading dairy production plants and design offices throughout the world as part of the ambitious project scope. and this at the time that GEA was supposed to be done with its planning. Gaining Independence When the series of intense meetings regarding the earthmoving work was over. the project was simply not ready to shift gears from park to drive. the project was about to shift gears from park to drive. Zvika was prepared with his response: “Accepting a decision to wait six months will amount to making a decision to wait 12 months. The project could not wait one full year. too many people at Tnuva were still sending GEA changes regarding project requirements. the key is that Ofer was convinced. Apparently. Thus. Due to the upcoming winter in November. I strongly recommend that we start the earthwork no later than May 2000.” Zvika strongly believed that the only way to stop this endless planning and preparation phase was by action. many functionaries at Tnuva were still bound to the idea of a state-of-the-art-driven dairy. then we will have to wait until the ground is dry around March 2001. at least the preliminary planning. At last. By that time. he requested a meeting in Ofer’s office. so at the end of March 2000. However. Tnuva’s equipment and process people strongly recommended that the design and construction of the facilities not be allowed to start for at least six more months. if the earthwork and foundations are not begun immediately. . and the results were quite alarming. so they claimed.198 Mastering the Leadership roLe in project ManageMent radical step.” Zvika was able to surprise them all. Unfortunately. and he was ready to bear the consequences of starting construction prior to finalizing the equipment planning.

put off investing in new fields. we must be willing to examine everything. The new guideline to the project team was issued very soon and was very sharp: Make every possible effort to expedite the completion of the Alon Tavor dairy. He summoned his entire executive team and the leadership of the project and instructed them to make radical changes in the project scope in order to cut the cost back to the original budget. Now the project had become “schedule-driven. with this . My decision obligates everyone to go back to the drawing board. the project maintained its “cost-driven” orientation only for a short period of time.000 square meters of future construction and equipment. This new development represented a threat to Tnuva’s domination in the cup products field. and the project was now back on track. even at a strategic level. He further emphasized to all involved parties what the consequences for Tnuva would be. Zvika viewed it differently. In light of this situation. if the schedule was not maintained. Ofer declared a state of crisis at the beginning of July 2000.” At every meeting. and it seriously worried Tnuva’s management. with a strong emphasis on cost savings. along with a deviation of more than 20 million dollars from the approved budget of 160 million dollars. Toward the end of 2000. and the like. He saw it as crucial leverage for finally making real progress. Ofer approved the plan changes and the new budget. was about to embark on a new cottage cheese line in its new dairy. 199 which led in the end to an additional 10. Now. Tnuva learned that Strauss.” For six weeks. recycle current equipment in place of purchasing new ones. lower the standards. However. Although this new development was clearly a possible source of difficulties for the project. Ofer stressed that the project had to be completed within 36 months. the project scope was re-evaluated and was then presented to Ofer with a significant physical reduction in the middle of August 2000. make the spaces smaller. Ofer’s instructions were unequivocal: “To cut costs. its greatest rival.

therefore. we must be willing to pay for redundancy. I. Decoupling is always costly. Supporting these types of loads is very expensive and requires a scrupulous design of the skeleton system. It was clear to me that the data Zvika was looking for was critical to start planning the building. but now he knew that he would be armed with a strong incentive to justify the added cost: meeting the expedited timetable.” One of the key unknowns preventing the design of the structure from proceeding was the weight of the permanent and portable equipment on the floor. the required load was much higher—two to three tons per square meter. the project manager for equipment and processes. Zvika recalls: “I asked them to indicate these areas on the plans and to confirm that this distribution of loads was final. They were reluctant to confirm. including foundations. Their design was not final. Zvika was rightfully putting pressure to get immediate data about the loads and equipment placement. I realized that there was no other choice. In most areas of the production hall of the dairy. but at that stage. Benjamin. however. and floors. beams. he could try to decouple the construction component of the project from the equipment and processes component that was lagging behind. I couldn’t help him. During meetings with the processing engineers. the processing engineers and some of the key people in Tnuva had not yet agreed even on the basic operations of the plant. recommended to Tnuva that . did not have a choice but to agree: “I was between a rock and a hard place. columns. On the other hand. Following several meetings with no closure regarding the distribution of the loads.200 Mastering the Leadership roLe in project ManageMent timetable pressure. Zvika and his team were able to identify a number of areas in which the loads required were extremely heavy. The common load in many industrial structures is about one ton per square meter. If we wanted to make any progress in the design of the structure.

who was the designated CEO of the dairy once operational. just the opposite of a common situation. was supposed to be overseeing and assisting Zvika and Benjamin. GEA. We would do better to develop a construction organization that will allow us to cope with these changes by being adaptable and responsive. he was still tied to his previous job and could not give the dairy his full attention during the very critical first year. However. we may find ourselves having to deal with two big and inflexible suppliers. schedule-driven project that suffers from limited cooperation with its equipment and process designers will undoubtedly have to cope with numerous delays and changes. in which the construction is led by the design constraints of the equipment layout. The cost of all the added redundancies was about half a million dollars. Instead of having difficulties only with one big supplier. A huge. Since there wasn’t enough time. we would be able to decouple the design of the structure from GEA.” . to issue a bid and sign a contract with one large construction firm. the construction people led the design of the dairy plant.” Now that the design engineers were working full speed on the design of the facilities. we may find ourselves engulfed in an endless stream of paperwork and grievances.” He further argued: “We should not kid ourselves. it was time to think about the next phase: construction. I needed to agree to Zvika’s recommendations.” Dror. we approved the added cost. as I realized that his solution was the best we would find under the difficult circumstances at that time. Thus. He was ready to go along with the program: “In this case. We then identified several other elements of the structure that required added redundancies. As is customary in many companies. Tnuva wanted to proceed through the common way—that is. complex. 201 all floors in the production hall be designed for three tons per square meter. he also served as the overall project director. Zvika disagreed: “By adopting the typical approach of hiring one large contractor. at least for a while. Once they were approved by Tnuva. However.

” Apparently. I was going to take a great personal risk. Tnuva has a set of clear procedures for the bidding process. the project would not meet its objectives. as Zvika and Tnuva soon learned. “by the book. Yoram. the relative freedom gained from GEA and from any future construction companies was not enough for ensuring speedy progress. they were authorized to negotiate with prospective contractors. and together with Zvika. Following the decoupling from GEA. the construction designers were able to finalize the design of the foundation and to prepare the needed material for the bidding process. However. and especially to have a decisive influence on which contractors were the most appropriate for each type of activity. on top of the design of the facilities and quality control inspection in the field.202 Mastering the Leadership roLe in project ManageMent Zvika therefore suggested to Tnuva to enlarge his contract and. Zvika had to gain freedom from Tnuva itself. this process was far too long for a schedule-driven project. to assign him the overall responsibility for construction as well: “As the ‘general contractor. With this additional responsibility. was certified to represent the committee at the site. and only then a contractor was selected. and his contract was enlarged accordingly. the prospects of experiencing bumpy progress one more time. like they had with GEA.” This was followed by two weeks of negotiations with the different bidders. and streamline it. the head of the construction division at Tnuva. It was not too difficult to convince the committee to abandon the standard process. However. However. . The foundations tender was treated by the committee in accordance with the formal procedures—that is. convinced Tnuva to go along with Zvika.’ it would be my responsibility to issue work to many medium-sized contractors and to ensure their responsiveness. move it to the construction site. This step allowed Zvika and his team to significantly shorten the time necessary to choose contractors. according to which the central tender committee meets at Tnuva Headquarters in Tel Aviv once biweekly to discuss material received in the previous week. I was sure that without it.

” the person who would serve as the overall manager of construction. was the one who caught his attention.” Accordingly. To maintain speed. During that time. told me that I must first test and see if I could work with Mike. However. 203 They chose contractors not only on the basis of price. Zvika and Mike agreed to a mutual trial period of three months. since dividing up the work greatly increased the competition between the . While the other good candidates were more ‘mainstream’ types of managers. He interviewed a number of good candidates for the position. in this case we took advantage of the situation. Zvika was now fully independent and finally ready to move to the site and start construction. Splitting and Harmonizing In October 2000. Zvika was forced to split the project among a large number of contractors: “While usually I might not like the added burden of coordinating between many contractors working on the same project. because of the slow and unpredictable flow of basic information from GEA. He had once worked at a different branch of Zvika’s project management company and had vast experience working on large and complex projects. Zvika was ready to recruit someone to staff the position of the “general contractor. during which they would try to devise the appropriate “division of labor” between the two of them. my intuition if you will. a 69-year-old civil engineer. something inside me. Zvika was concerned that Mike was rumored to have a “centralist” personality. yet Mike. I was also worried about his ability to cope with the huge and complicated site at his age. but rather based on previous experience working with them and on their ability to commit to a schedule. the design of the facility was not smooth and produced only small chunks of work. with trouble accepting authority: “I was concerned that we wouldn’t be able to work as a team.

Mike was a man of extremes. We both knew that it was a great success for both of us. and another four on electrical systems. who relied on Tnuva’s financial stability. Thus. but inflexible.204 Mastering the Leadership roLe in project ManageMent contractors. under my recommendation. In order to help him. Likewise. were not afraid to accelerate their pace of work and knew that all bills submitted would be approved and paid on time. the contractors . another eight on the steel frame. which would allow the contractor to complete the work in the meantime.’ I made sure to keep continuity in providing the contractors with work in order to avoid wasting equipment and manpower.” At the end of the three-month trial period. if one of the contractors was having trouble with cash flow. for example. work of the ‘elephants’ at GEA.” At the peak of operations at the dairy plant. Each contractor who completed his work to our satisfaction immediately received another ‘chunk of work. Tnuva took it upon itself to directly pay the workers. He helped. the client trusted Mike and his team and never appealed a bill that he had approved: “In more than a few cases.” The contractors. Tnuva went above and beyond to help contractors who were in need. Tnuva agreed. there were ten contractors simultaneously working on the concrete skeleton. for the project. We agreed that our strong cooperation had surprised us. I used to compare the quick pace and agility of the ‘monkeys’ on-site versus the reliable. in every possible way. to pay a one-time sum as a premium beyond the contract. one of the contractors was having difficulty paying his foreign workers. For example. six in stainless steel. On a different occasion. there were around 250 different contractors and suppliers in construction alone. who were generally paid in cash. there was no question in Zvika’s mind as to whether Mike would be staying: “Mike and I did not have to discuss whether or not he would stay on the job. but more importantly. Mike describes the work climate: “We very much encouraged competition between the different contractors.

He loved meeting and talking ‘on the scaffolding’ with work managers as well as with the ‘simple’ workers. In order to cut these costs. As much as he could. shipped to the site. which he viewed as an outrageous waste of time. and assembled there. none of them needed it continuously onsite. while he did not hide his dislike toward those he considered inferior. Mike was a man of action and hated sitting at large meetings. While each one of those contractors now needed to order a very expensive crane. He preferred to focus on helping the contractors on-site. Dividing up the manufacturing of the pre-fabricated elements between three suppliers sped up manufacturing but created a new problem. This time frame provided all the on-site contractors with two large mobile cranes for the duration of construction. 205 that he considered to be good. Tnuva agreed and signed a one-year rental contract with a crane supplier. The contractors loved him and trusted him blindfolded that he wouldn’t hold back any effort to help them with anything. The constant presence of these cranes on-site not only significantly lowered the costs. he made sure that those contractors would not work again in his territory. which were made by specialized manufacturers. and the cost of moving a crane to and from the site was extremely expensive. Zvika proposed that Tnuva rent the cranes. the order for the pre-fabricated elements was split between three separate manufacturers. When the manager of a certain contracting company came onsite in fancy clothing or in a Mercedes. it drove him crazy. To meet the compressed timetable. with the weight of each unit ranging from seven to twenty tons.” Due to the accelerated schedule. the building skeleton was designed to be built with pre-fabricated concrete elements. Zvika explains: “The pre-fabricated elements that were designed for the production building were especially heavy. but also sped up .

particularly for designers at a distant location: “In order to avoid the need for the common. especially for foreign designers working abroad. The system allowed everyone to view and use all the plans in the system in real time. yet expensive and inefficient. GEA was still behind . as well as on creating a climate which would facilitate sharing problems quickly and openly. During most of the construction. That way. To encourage the ongoing planning and coordination among all the design engineers. and to ensure that all designers in Israel and in Germany were working with the most up-to-date version of the plans.” Zvika emphasizes the importance of communication between everyone involved in the construction: “At this stage. all the necessary copies could be made and distributed to the many contractors on-site.” The construction site was even photographed once a month from the air. we put a unique intranet system in place. Receiving an up-to-date documentation of the situation on-site was very helpful. the team of inspectors we had on-site carried out daily documentation of progress via digital cameras. my strategy for accelerating construction was focused on better communication—that is. designers and managers. both on-site and at the various offices. messenger services.” He went on to explain the significance of this system. The photos were distributed via the intranet network to all the designers and contractors in Israel and abroad. since the cranes were now available 24 hours a day. The blueprints were sent to the site via the intranet. an advanced workstation was installed on-site to produce blueprints. could always be updated about any change that was made. and within minutes. on developing a system which would enable the quick updating of changes.206 Mastering the Leadership roLe in project ManageMent the rate of work. The most recent photographs were compared with the photographs from the previous month and sent to all managers at Tnuva and GEA. In addition.

I believe that the key was rather ‘high-touch’ communication and especially being ‘close to the action’ on-site. and their expected role was to continuously verify that the work was being performed according to the project design and specifications and the accepted standards. and especially to convince GEA that it was time to accelerate its pace of work. and because they were sure that construction on-site was also lagging behind. took place on-site. from the beginning of the work to its end.” Mike elaborates: “Each one of the inspectors undertook a specific aspect of the project. and in that framework acted relatively independently. all project meetings. they were not making a special effort to overcome the delay. Zvika sums up his team’s approach: “As much as we invested in ‘high-tech’ communication. By displaying the monthly progress in a clear and vivid way. The team of inspectors was composed of twelve engineers who were carefully chosen by Mike and me. Each . These meetings were very effective. felt responsible for it.” As Zvika describes. They were sure that the schedule reports sent by Zvika. 207 schedule. Tnuva built a temporary. The designers of the facility met weekly there. but comfortable and sophisticated. “The best example of how rich and frequent face-to-face communication can connect people and make them into a cohesive team was the daily meetings that Mike held with his team of inspectors. and was committed to its success. Zvika was trying to call everybody’s attention to the fast progress on-site. For this purpose. just could not be accurate. office building on-site. both for solving problems in real time and for building strong cooperation among the various design engineers. Therefore. and each of the meetings began with a tour of the site. showing extremely fast progress.

” The most important contribution of the inspectors. and to prepare for the next day. which contributed greatly to strengthening the connections made during work. the contractors. Then it was only natural to become more responsive to their customers. to share learning. however. In this way. as if they were his consultant or partner. Gradually.” Zvika believed that Mike was being far too modest: “I disagree with Mike. Mike describes this transformation: “They have stopped seeing their role as ‘a policeman who writes a ticket for violating the rules. held even outside of work hours and including other family members. . was completely unexpected. The intensity of performance and the daily meetings created a ‘team spirit.’ extending to informal meetings. The harmonious relationship between the inspectors and the contractors was the direct result of Mike’s behavior. I may have contributed a bit to the development of this unique and harmonious relationship between the inspectors and the contractors. the unpleasant control function of the inspectors became a very productive joint problem-solving function.208 Mastering the Leadership roLe in project ManageMent day the entire team gathered to analyze the contractors’ performance. rather than his policeman. the commitment to project success. Rather than wait until a problem developed and became visible and difficult to rectify. As the project progressed. on the part of both the inspectors and the contractors. He made his inspectors change their outlook and start to see the contractors as their customers.’ but rather as someone making sure that the contractor can accomplish the mission without violating the rules. the inspectors together with the contractors solved problems as soon as they arose. grew immensely. most of the inspectors perceived their job as helping the contractor to produce quality work. but I have to admit that I did not attempt to bring it about and did not even see it coming. Often they were able to prevent problems from happening at all.

Outside catering was ordered. Tnuva also funded a personal gift that was distributed to all of the workers. As time went on. efficiency. Workers and exceptional contractors received certificates of appreciation. was a good enough reason to throw a joint party for all the workers. and GEA—still hopelessly behind schedule—was going to be held responsible for the delays. in which Tnuva thanked the workers for their contribution and wished them a happy holiday. When Mike learned that in December of 2001. and the Christians (Christmas) were set to fall during the same week. The event was nicely organized and was funded by Tnuva and the various contractors. and which was completed faster than expected. and speed of the work cannot be overestimated. and English). GEA was very busy with other projects in Europe and chose to match the pace of their work to the premise that the construction team would not be able to complete and hand over the structures for equipment installation according to the planned schedule. and nice tables with food and drink ‘fit for a king’ were set up and served personally to all the workers by the catering staff. and the CEOs of all the companies as well as from Tnuva also attended. This event aroused a lot of excitement for all involved and even received attention from the local media. they realized that their assumption was wrong. the holidays for the Jews (Chanuka). He declared that pouring the second concrete ceiling.” This feeling of cooperation and mutual respect was expressed in the “Holiday of Holidays” event. All the contractors were asked to arrive that day in festive clothing. Arabic. . 209 I believe that the huge contribution of the dedicated work of the inspectors to the quality. the friction between GEA and Tnuva and the on-site construction team did not subside. Construction was about to be completed. Suddenly. which had been done around the same time. A nice printed card was attached with a message in three languages (Hebrew. he decided that this was an excellent opportunity to celebrate and to say a loud and clear thank-you to all 500 workers on-site. the Muslims (Eid alAdha).

210 Mastering the Leadership roLe in project ManageMent Dror. Mike had cultivated an . such as cutting large openings in existing walls. The disputes between GEA and Tnuva continued. As it turned out. including about 35 people. I threatened that if the size of their design team was not going to be increased significantly and immediately. I specifically referred to the milk basement. However. These proposed alterations would be costly. delivered a reality check and an ultimatum: “In a stormy meeting that I had in January 2001 in Germany with GEA management. The CEO of GEA was astounded that I dared claim that the completed basement would be handed over to GEA in the beginning of March 2001.” In March 2001. GEA installation teams. I complained about the great delay in design. This time. the basement foundation had been entirely completed. speaking German became crucial when GEA arrived on the scene. and this added friction was not helpful for progress on-site. which involved working together with many foreign companies and experts from a wide variety of countries. was a big advantage in this project. The photograph showed that during those two weeks. including English and German. which GEA had promised to begin working on in March 2001. both in terms of money and time. I immediately called Zvika and asked him to photograph the status of that day and send it to me by email. Zvika attached a daily work plan showing that the structure would be ready to be handed over to GEA by the beginning of March 2001. arrived at the site. Mike was able to smooth things over. GEA needed Tnuva’s approval for changes to already constructed facilities. The fact that he was American and was fluent in many languages. It seemed to me that my visit put GEA under great stress because their premise that the facility would be delayed had not stood up to the test of reality. CEO of the dairy. when two weeks earlier he had been informed by on-site delegates that the basement floor had just been poured. we would fine them for damages.

was creating the role for the general contractor and recruiting Mike for the job. and the most successful one. with a small deviation in budget. we were able to easily split the work between the two of us and to cooperate in the most harmonious way possible all the time. At the end of each workday. and he was a great asset to the project. issues that needed coordination were pinpointed. and they trusted him much more than they trusted the Tnuva people. Mike and I are such different people. and a work plan for the following day was agreed upon. and yet.” Zvika agrees with Benjamin and adds: “The dairy project required me to make more than a few difficult decisions. Having Mike on the team allowed me to concentrate on planning and preparing for the next month and the next quarter. He won their highest level of cooperation. when all the troubles of the day were brought up. I believe the key was that Mike is a person who does what he says. a person you can easily trust. the project manager for equipment and processes recalls: “Mike helped me a lot in dealing with the German contractors. and the loser had to pay for drinks that day. 211 overall friendly working relationship with the GEA on-site manager. Benjamin. I think that the most unusual action. This informal relationship helped substantially in reducing the stress between the two sides. which led me to take several out-of-theordinary actions. They also received a letter of recognition and a premium for accomplishing a near-impossible mission. You can quickly gain his trust if you happen to belong to the camp of people who do what they say. The two had a liking for “betting” on tasks that seemed impossible. Looking back at the project. . the two had the habit of meeting in the office to have a glass of whisky. He developed very unique ties with them. Zvika and his team won much praise from the Tnuva management and from the operators themselves.” The project ended on time. knowing that today and next week are being taken care of by him in the best possible way.

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213 . a model built on the basis of the actual behavior of successful practitioners. this model can serve as an excellent tool for facilitating your ongoing thoughtful reflection. This was also the main guideline for developing the following nine practices for project leadership. However. Moreover. The individual practices should guide you in building your experience base. Thus. one practice at a time.Epilogue Practices for Project Leadership by Alexander Laufer Successful project leadership is an ongoing process of learning. experience alone without thoughtful reflection is meaningless. effective reflection should be done in light of a theory or a model of the phenomenon at hand. this book’s content. Leadership develops primarily through on-the-job experiences. format. The nine practices as a whole represent an overall model for project leadership. and structure were designed with a clear purpose: to encourage an attitude of responsibility for one’s own learning and to facilitate the learning process. As such. The eight contextually rich and vivid cases should have provided you with enough direction to start the long journey from management to leadership.

a Greek philosopher. they may face great uncertainty—living order—that does not completely disappear over the entire course of the project. In his 1907 book Creative Evolution. Heraclitus. tends to produce novel problems.500 years ago. Indeed. in “living order” he referred to phenomena such as the creativity of an individual.” the project as a whole does not assume geometric order until late in its life. turbulent. Peter Vaill. but rather two sorts of order: geometric order and living order. and is “messy” and ill-structured. At the start. or the mess in my office. Today. argued that the only constant in our world is change. the economic. social. all projects aim to reach a perfectly functioning product with geometric order. In a 1977 Harvard Business Review article. While in “geometric order” Bergson related to the traditional concept of order. a work of art. explains that the complex. and political challenges of globalization and the rapid technological innovations make this statement as true as ever. Gradually. an American professor of management. some parts of the project approach geometric order. are they different?” Zaleznik answered . Vaill calls our attention to the fact that the external environment of contemporary projects is full of surprises. As the cases in this book clearly demonstrate. professor Abraham Zaleznik of Harvard Business School was the first to pose the question. “Managers and leaders. However. Bergson claimed that there is no such thing as disorder. it was the French Nobel Prize winner Henri Bergson who a century ago proposed a concept of order that today might help us to better see project reality.214 Mastering the Leadership roLe in project ManageMent First Practice: Embrace the “Living Order” Concept About 2.” In using the “permanent white water” metaphor. and changing environment faced by contemporary organizations renders the leadership of these organizations like navigating in “permanent white water. though in an era of “permanent white water.

EpiloguE • practicEs for projEct lEadErship 215 resoundingly in the affirmative. temporary. you will quickly understand and easily apply the practices to your own project. and evolving project organization. to accept that you can’t avoid “living order” in your projects and that you better expect and tolerate it. whereas managers seek order and control. It should facilitate your ability to perceive reality as it is. Zaleznik added that the instinctive move of the manager to prematurely impose order on chaos is more problematic to the organization than the direct impact of the chaos. they are ready to keep answers in suspense. . As a result. must as well. Leaders can tolerate chaos and lack of structure. and you. which is composed of heterogeneous units These project leaders were clearly able to tolerate the “living order” in their projects. He further explained that one crucial difference between managers and leaders lies in the conceptions they hold of chaos and order. and thus. The project leaders throughout this book demonstrated that they did not rush to impose “geometric order” prematurely. Reflecting on the stories in this book should help you embrace Bergson’s classification of two sorts of order. as well as with sudden changes in these requirements and constraints • Numerous unexpected events and problems subsequent to the above difficulties • Difficulties of coping with these problems due to the unique. They knew that their projects would inevitably be affected by one or more of the following: • Changes resulting from the dynamic environment • Surprises resulting from the unique and often innovative tasks • Difficulties of coping with challenging requirements and radical constraints. the reader.

” or that you must always “start from scratch. Indeed. the use of procedures in a product development project with their use in a repeated tasks project. context-free practices. I am practical—you are opportunistic. It depends on the context. Larry Lawson.216 Mastering the Leadership roLe in project ManageMent Practice Two: Adjust Project Practices to the Specific Context Malcolm Forbes. on the one hand.. that there are no “wrong ways. In . all of the project managers throughout this book spent a great deal of time adjusting their practices to the specific context of their project. made the following insightful observation: “What is strength in one context can be a weakness in another context. the rationale behind the design of this book is to help the reader understand how successful project managers deviate from the common “one best way” approach and adjust their practices to the specific context of their project.. the four distinctly different types of projects in this book allow us to see that in projects sharing common characteristics and coping with similar challenges. the project managers used many practices in a like manner. and enhancing the flexibility and creativity within each individual project on the other. Let us compare. I am flexible—you are weak. however. In contrast to the literature emphasizing standard. the project manager for Lockheed Martin Corporation. At the same time.” The current practice is a key practice that significantly affects all other practices. was instructed to throw out all the military standards and was given the freedom to put together his own approach as long as it met the project’s three key performance parameters. for example. I’m persevering—you are stubborn. In the JASSM project. the publisher of Forbes magazine.” that “anything goes. Avoiding the “one best way” approach does not imply.” There is always the need to strike a balance between relying on the accumulated knowledge of the organization.

move it to the . Yet. they adjusted the practice to be highly flexible and informal. the team at the Pathfinder project was expected to strictly adhere to the extremely detailed flight procedures. the project managers adjusted the practice to the situation. realized that the existing procedures for the bidding process would not allow them to accelerate construction. Still. it is important to be aware that different contexts are found not only between projects. the dairy project was forced to adapt to three distinct overriding strategies. when they learned that their domination in the cup products field was about to be threatened by their greatest rival. Following the change to a schedule-driven strategy. but also within projects. In all four cases. In the Yad Vashem Museum project. We can also compare between the different ways in which planning was accomplished in one project involving product development and another project involving repeated tasks. In contrast. they switched one more time to a schedule-driven focus. For example. It started with the development of a state-of-the-art-driven dairy. the project manager. Moreover. Zvika. Each change of strategy meant a change of context and was accompanied by an adjustment in project practices. a “dairy of dreams” as they termed it. EpiloguE • practicEs for projEct lEadErship 217 sharp contrast. there was even an extremely rigorous process for preparing and refining these flight procedures. and in the two repeated tasks projects they changed the practice to be highly rigid and formal. When they found that this strategy led to a huge growth in project scope and overall cost. the project manager of the harbor cranes transfer project prepared and followed an extremely detailed plan with about 300 specific activities for each sea voyage. the only way for the contractor’s project manager to make progress was to frequently disregard the existing plans and instead embark on “planning by action” via well-prepared mockups. they embraced a cost-driven orientation. In the two product development projects. By convincing the committee to abandon the standard process.

After starting under severe cost constraints. expects the project manager to serve primarily as a controller: to ensure that team members adhere to the established standard. and streamline it. Zvika and his team were able to significantly shorten the time necessary to choose contractors to fulfill the new schedule-driven strategy. Don Margolies. the project ended up being ahead of schedule and under budget in the final stages. and he must adjust the common practices to the unique situation. Challenging the status quo might significantly change the fate of the project and is the essence of project leadership. such as those presented in this book that present a variety of contexts and solutions. Practice Three: Challenge the Status Quo The most powerful developments in all eight projects took place as a result of the willingness of the project manager to challenge the status quo.218 Mastering the Leadership roLe in project ManageMent construction site. This role entails only a minimal requirement for judgment and no requirement for adaptation. Stories. are an excellent source for enriching your experience base. The classical model of project management. decided to reverse the previous practice of good enough is good enough. to good enough is not good enough by supporting the uncommon step of taking off the instruments for recalibration. in which standards are developed for virtually all situations. Following are several examples of how our project managers challenged the status quo: . the ACE project manager. usually several times throughout the life of the project. This process requires a great deal of interpretation and judgment based on rich experience. the project manager must constantly engage in making sense of the ambiguous and changing situation. Thus. the ACE project went through changes in its major drivers. In reality. Likewise.

Rather. the project manager. the project manager of AMRAAM. one had specialized in producing baseball bats and golf club shafts and the other in building surfboards. supported the uncommon step of taking the instruments off the spacecraft for recalibration. the battalion commander. So Judy took it upon herself to change the project’s culture. to replace many of his recruits. but he did not. • In the final stages of ACE. Jenny. with NASA serving as an advisor and team member with limited authority. However. This operation had never before been done at NASA and put him at odds with both his superiors and his team members. • In the evacuation case. her mission would not be truly accomplished. It was composed of four industry rivals. Yaron was of the opinion that training the soldiers whom he had on hand would not enable him to complete the mission successfully. the project manager for NASA. Thus. she believed that without first introducing a far-reaching. Yaron. the company took a risk and produced components of the missile at two small companies that had not previously been in the missile business. propelled and nurtured a unique organizational structure that was far from a traditional one. • Judy Stokley. the project manager for Lockheed Martin. unconventional change in the culture of the organization involving a shift from control to trust and responsibility. . initially against the will of his superiors. was authorized by the Pentagon to proceed with downsizing. was instructed by his superiors to start training his recruits. tells how to cut costs drastically. Larry Lawson. Yaron embarked on a long campaign. • In Pathfinder. Don Margolies. EpiloguE • practicEs for projEct lEadErship 219 • In JASSM.

was convinced that it was time to stop the endless planning and preparation phase of constructing the new dairy. . Against the advice of the client’s professional staff. The fox is a cunning and creative creature. he reacts in the same simple. Every day the fox waits for the hedgehog while planning to attack him. but powerful. the project manager of the dairy plant. Then the fox retreats while starting to plan his new line of attack for the next day. able to devise a myriad of complex strategies for sneak attacks upon the hedgehog. he took it up with the head of the client’s organization. yet they do not integrate their thinking into one overall concept. In recent years. Berlin attempted to divide the world into two basic groups: foxes and hedgehogs.220 Mastering the Leadership roLe in project ManageMent • Zvika. Is there a fundamental characteristic that these project managers share that can explain their unconventional actions? In a famous essay. way every day: He rolls up into a perfect little ball with a sphere of sharp spikes pointing outward in all directions. several prominent management scholars have discussed this parable while attempting to answer the following question: Do successful senior managers behave more like hedgehogs or like foxes? The debate regarding senior managers is still ongoing. Based on this parable. the hedgehog always wins. but when it comes to successful project managers. though they place the hedgehog in the driver’s seat. When the hedgehog senses the danger. Foxes pursue many ends at the same time. simplify a complex world into a single overall concept that unifies and guides everything they do. The hedgehog is a painfully slow creature with a very simple daily agenda: searching for food and maintaining his home. on the other hand. Each day this confrontation takes place. Hedgehogs. Oxford philosopher Isaiah Berlin described two approaches to life using a simple parable about the fox and the hedgehog. and despite the greater cunning of the fox. I have found that they behave both like hedgehogs and foxes. where he was finally able to obtain the green light to move ahead.

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Like the hedgehog, the project managers in all eight cases were guided by one overriding purpose: delivering successful results to the customer. They clearly felt a sense of ownership of the project, involving an intellectual and emotional bond with the mission that they were trying to accomplish. For these project managers, the project objectives were not simply the technical definitions of the customer’s needs. Rather, for them, project objectives meant first of all project results, and they felt total personal accountability for those results. It also meant that they had the self-discipline required for placing all other objectives and opportunities secondary. It was almost as if they were programmed to follow an inner compass that was always pointing toward true north. However, if they could not reach this goal by following conventional methods, they responded by challenging the status quo. This kind of response requires strong willpower and courage. It is important to note, however, that this very focus on delivering results to the customer was also responsible for keeping the frequency of challenging the status quo within limits. These experienced project managers knew very well that challenging the status quo comes with its own risks and costs. In each case, they had to dedicate special attention and energy to overcoming the natural resistance to change and to learning how to perform effectively once this resistance was overcome. This temporary disequilibrium in the project could have led to loss of momentum and progress, eventually hurting their ability to serve the customer. Since their primary focus was not on proving that they were heroes, but rather on delivering results to the customer, they were selective in employing this practice. Thus, their hedgehog’s mentality with its overriding purpose guided them in selecting the right cases for challenging the status quo. And now to the role of the fox. It is evident from the eight cases presented in the book that while it was the project managers’ focused willpower that led them to challenge the status quo, the solutions to the problems they faced demanded a great deal of adaptability and


Mastering the Leadership roLe in project ManageMent

creativity. That is precisely the time when the focused hedgehog calls on the creative fox for help. By embracing the behavior of both the hedgehog and the fox, you should also be able to successfully challenge the status quo when the need arises.

Practice Four: Do Your Utmost to Recruit the Right People
In 1911, Fredrick Taylor, the father of “scientific management,” said: “In the past, man has been first. In the future, the system must be first.” One hundred years later and the project managers of all eight projects beg to differ loud and clear. For example, Ray Morgan, the Pathfinder project manager, learned that finding the right balance between systems and people is critical to being a good project manager, but more importantly, he realized that people matter the most because they make the systems work. Terry Little, the JASSM program manager, describes his management philosophy by declaring: “McNamara, I am not.” Here he refers to the limited impact he found in projects for the analytical approach of the Robert McNamara School of Management, where everything is quantifiable and based on models. Terry shares his own conclusion: “Projects move ahead because of the activities of people.” The underlying assumptions and demonstrated behavior of the project managers throughout the book can be summed up as follows: People are the make-or-break factor in projects. With the right people, almost anything is possible. With the wrong team, failure awaits. Thus, recruiting should be taken seriously, and considerable time should be spent finding and attracting, and at times fighting for, the right people. Even greater attention may have to be paid to the selection of the right project manager.

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Indeed, Shimon, the Yad Vashem Museum project manager on behalf of the client, understood the pivotal role of selecting the general contractor. He took great pains to identify and recruit the most suitable project manager for the contractor’s team by using an unconventional three-stage selection process based on multiple factors, not only the total cost of construction. After reviewing all of the proposals received, Shimon selected the company most likely to be awarded the job as contractor and then applied pressure on the director of the company to include his choice for project manager on their team. Shimon’s efforts paid off, and his request was met by a positive response from the company. Yaron, the battalion commander in the evacuation case, provides another example of the importance of finding the right people for the task at hand. When he realized that many of his squad leaders were not fit for the mission, he started a campaign to replace them and did not stop until he was able to reach the commander of the Israeli Air Force and recruit new squad leaders who were more suitable for the job. Recruiting the right people does not have to mean recruiting the world’s most talented “stars.” Often this is simply not practical, and organizational politics might make it impossible for the project manager to steal away the best people within the organization because they’re already involved in other critical projects or fiercely defended by other managers. What’s important, as Brian Rutledge, the financial manager at JASSM, reminds us, is that “you have to get the right people for the right job at the right time.” Even if they could have recruited many stars, our project managers would not have attempted to do so because they knew that if everybody is a potential CEO, then it becomes too difficult to develop a cooperative environment. Indeed, while recruiting, they were constantly thinking about the team as a whole, making sure that the selected team members could work with each other as required by the unique context of the project. Thus, they selected people not only


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on the basis of their technical, functional, or problem-solving skills, but also on the basis of their interpersonal skills. Allan Frandsen, a payload manager from the California Institute of Technology, looked for people who were a little bit out of the mainstream and could flourish in a university environment—people with the “right mix of talent and attitude,” a flexible outlook, and high adaptability. Indeed, he considered flexibility to be even more important than sheer brain power. At times, especially for large projects, the project manager must select a group of leaders for his or her team. Chuck Anderson from Raytheon explains that the “right” people he was searching for were real leaders who would be willing to make swift decisions and take risks without fear of failing.

Practice Five: Shape the Right Culture
Project culture is what holds the organization together, providing project members with a shared frame of reference, rules for behavior, and an understanding of the do’s and don’ts of project life. When project members share the same culture, they develop a set of mutually accepted ideas of what is real in their constantly changing environment, what is important, and how to respond. The Talmud says: “We do not see things as they are. We see things as we are.” Cultural differences between project groups are often accompanied by divergent assumptions, values, and perceptions of reality that can have serious implications for project performance. As Don Margolies, the project manager of the NASA Advanced Composition Explorer (ACE) project, quips: “If Goddard (NASA) said the sky was blue, APL would say it was pink.” Unfortunately, these difficulties are not uncommon for projects. Project organization is temporary, with a finite end, and is typically composed of groups from different organizations, often with a range

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of cultures. The project organization evolves throughout the life of the project, where different groups join and leave the project as dictated by the unique nature of the specific project. The limited and relatively short life of most projects, and the typically different cultures and interests of the various groups composing the project, render shaping project culture—one culture for the whole team—very difficult. Zvika, the project manager of the Tnuva dairy plant, uses this vivid metaphor to illustrate the impact of working with different project cultures: “I used to compare the quick pace and agility of the “monkeys” on site versus the reliable, but inflexible, work of the “elephants” at GEA.” It is important to stress that even in permanent organizations, shaping culture is not easy and indeed requires leadership. Professor Edgar Schein of the MIT Sloan School of Management, who is generally credited with introducing the term “corporate culture,” distinguishes between leadership and management by arguing that leadership creates and changes cultures, whereas management acts within a culture. Indeed, the project managers in all eight cases in this book found that one of the key factors for project success was the need to shape the culture of their projects. Teamwork—mutual interdependence and mutual responsibility for project results—was one element of culture that was universally guided by the philosophy of “we’re all in this together.” For example, the focus of the AMRAAM project was on shaping project culture, with an emphasis on teamwork, mutual trust, and responsibility for results. This change was successful as a result of the deep commitment and personal involvement of the two project leaders from the U.S. Air Force and from Raytheon. A more limited effort to improve teamwork and trust, but nevertheless a creative one, was introduced by Don Margolies, the NASA project manager of ACE. Don attempted to alleviate some of the problems that resulted from the cultural differences between APL and NASA Goddard by

Ray Morgan. For example. Fortunately. Once the locals felt invested in the team’s success. the battalion commander. this time not between two organizations. but also to ensure that the “right” culture fits their unique context. that’s right.” However. To accelerate this change. we sang. Still. Making such a successful change is often dependent on having the right people and sometimes may be accomplished only by replacing some key people.” The “mandatory” karaoke parties held at Dave’s place with the whole NASA and AeroVironment team helped to break the ice and form a crucial basis of trust with the people of Kauai. Project leaders need to shape their project culture not only to promote a “teamwork” culture. Allan Frandsen’s hand selection of his small team at the NASA Jet Propulsion Laboratory was still not enough to foster development of the right culture on the team. they were ready and willing to do whatever they could to help AeroVironment reach its goals. Yes. Yaron. So we sang with him. the short distance between Goddard and APL went a long way toward establishing a trustful relationship and cultivating a partnership between the two organizations. Allan . but rather between the project team and the residents of the island of Kauai. at least not fast enough. who had a natural apprehension about outsiders. even selecting the right people does not always bring about the desired cultural change. explains how Dave Nekomoto served as their entrée into the community. For example. they had to take a highly unconventional approach to “fitting in” and establishing a good rapport with the local residents: “Dave had—how shall I say it?—a thing for karaoke. smoothing the way for them in dealing with the local authorities. The cultural change in the Pathfinder project was also focused on collaboration.226 Mastering the Leadership roLe in project ManageMent introducing frequent face-to-face meetings. the AeroVironment project manager. did not have any choice but to replace many of his squad leaders to be sure that his battalion would embrace the required attitude of “with determination and sensitivity. in the evacuation case.

planning establishes the targets and the course of action for reaching them. he asked me if I wanted some help.” Practice Six: Plan.’ But that’s not what he said.. planning and control are portrayed as the backbone of successful projects. Instead. control involves measuring and evaluating performance and taking corrective action when performance deviates from plans. Although Caltech is only seven miles from JPL.. while control ensures that the course of action is maintained and that the desired targets are indeed reached. According to this outlook. Teams are defined by how they react in adversity— and how their leaders react.. tailoring.. there is a noticeable cultural difference between the two institutions. Terry. Therefore. or even breaking the rules when necessary. and innovation. and at times may actually encourage. Lockheed’s project manager. Monitor. risk taking. the JASSM project manager. bending. The lessons learned by this team about how to respond to adversity enabled us to solve bigger challenges. and I want to have an independent technical review. was able to develop a culture of autonomy. learning.. Allan assumed that being surrounded by scientists and interacting with them on a daily basis in Caltech’s research environment would help the new team to quickly develop an adaptive culture—a culture that allows.. EpiloguE • practicEs for projEct lEadErship 227 moved the team from JPL to Caltech.. By being a failure-tolerant leader. . Another example of facilitating the desired cultural change can be found in the JASSM case. describes Terry’s reaction to the team’s initial failure and how he used it to help shape this culture: “After months of working seven-day weeks. our first missile launch after the contract award failed. Terry could have said. ‘I don’t trust you. It was the defining moment for the program. and Anticipate Classically.. Larry Lawson.

the primary role of project control was to identify deviations from the plan and adjust execution to conform to the plan. These project managers know that in a dynamic environment. the central role for measuring and evaluating performance is to provide quick feedback necessary for further planning. Thus. however. while planning and control are still central for project success. “Why didn’t your performance yesterday conform to the original plan?” but rather. Today. in the two product development projects. Project control. ensuring project targets are reached. can serve only as a means to monitor performance. can be achieved only by applying all nine practices described in this Epilogue. they demonstrate that the planning time and the planning methods are strongly affected by the stability of the available information. For example. that is.228 Mastering the Leadership roLe in project ManageMent The cases in this book demonstrate that in today’s “permanent white water” environment. The main purpose of project control is not to answer the question. only short-term plans were prepared. Classic concepts of project control were developed for stable environments in which it was expected that planning would be fairly accurate and implementation would largely adhere to the plan. measuring and evaluating performance. their scopes are significantly different. The change in the scope of project control has been even more radical. which is classically regarded as project control. projects succeed only through the constant monitoring of performance . much of the information was missing or highly ambiguous and remained volatile throughout the life of the projects. In general. and a great deal of planning was accomplished through prototyping as part of “planning by action” (more on planning by action in “Practice Eight”). “What kind of feedback can help you learn faster and perform better tomorrow?” Under conditions of uncertainty. But by no means are these activities enough in order to provide project control. Accordingly. Successful project managers do not limit their monitoring to events occurring within the typical boundaries of their assigned role.

as well as early signals of possible problems. Deliberate anticipation entails focusing attention on identifying irregularities. with anticipation of problems topping the list as the most important role of the project manager: “To lead a project effectively. So what are the alternatives? Are there sensible workarounds? What can I do now to lay the groundwork or facilitate matters should something go wrong? These and other questions make up the ongoing process of anticipation.. the ACE payload project manager. And because it is an ongoing process.. the U. what is supposed to happen next—but all too often it doesn’t.. anticipate. Terry Little. at least in general terms.’” . leaving sufficient time to attenuate and often eliminate their impact on the project. one has to establish and maintain the flexibility to take appropriate actions when needed. Air Force project manager of JASSM. EpiloguE • practicEs for projEct lEadErship 229 and changes outside their formal boundaries. In particular. anticipate.. concisely described his project management philosophy. Allan Frandsen. many of the most crucial “challenging the status quo” actions were initiated proactively by the project managers. and being flexible and ready to respond. the ‘A’ in the ABCs of project management could just as well stand for ‘anticipate. The critical importance of anticipation has been demonstrated throughout this book. he was also aware that such a visit would allow him to anticipate problems even before they actually occurred. ‘A’ would signify anticipate. a good project manager already knows. However. Of course. primarily as a result of their constant engagement in ongoing deliberate anticipation.S. If I had to write down the ABCs of project management. Terry was aware that a government project manager does not normally visit the suppliers of a prime contractor. demonstrated this notion by taking a trip to visit one of the contractors’ suppliers.

the project manager of the dairy plant. When the project suffers from high uncertainty.. all project meetings. The blueprints were sent to the site via the intranet. both for solving problems .” However. especially for the foreign designers working abroad. all the necessary copies could be made and distributed to the many contractors on site. the team of inspectors we had on site carried out daily documentation of progress via digital cameras.. covering a wide spectrum from high tech to high touch.. The photos were distributed via the intranet network to all the designers and contractors in Israel as well as abroad. I believe that the key was rather ‘high-touch’ communication. The designers of the facility met weekly there. composed of people affiliated with different organizations. Zvika. and each of the meetings began with a tour of the site..230 Mastering the Leadership roLe in project ManageMent Practice Seven: Use Face-to-Face Communication as the Primary Communication Mode Because a project functions as an ad hoc temporary and evolving organization. Zvika goes on to describe another component of the communication system that he used on site: “As much as we invested in ‘high-tech’ communication. These meetings were very effective. from the beginning of the work to its end. took place on site. In addition. communication serves as the glue that binds together all parts of the organization. the role played by project communication is even more advanced work station was installed on site to produce blueprints. Receiving an up-to-date documentation of the situation on site was helpful. In the following example. explained some of the unique features of the hightech communication systems that he developed for his construction site: “. and within minutes. The project managers in this book employed a great variety of communication mediums.

EpiloguE • practicEs for projEct lEadErship 231 in real time and for building strong cooperation among the various design engineers. a wealth of information creates a poverty of attention. scarcity of attention has become the key challenge for effective project communication. Hence. Air Force chief financial officer of AMRAAM. Then.” In recent years. including eye contact. Thus. For example.” . face-to-face communication is the best medium for quick resolution of ambiguity and for building a strong foundation of trust. Its strength lies in the fact that it provides timely and personalized feedback by using multiple channels of communications. provides a succinct description of this challenge: “What information consumes is rather obvious: It consumes the attention of its recipients. particularly for novel and ambiguous issues and when building social bonding and trust is crucial. By seeing how others are responding to a verbal message even before it is complete. body language. the speaker can alter it midstream and provide necessary clarification. which can convey a deeper and more convincing message than any other form of communication. Dennis reminded them. and facial expressions.” Indeed. When interaction takes place in a group setting. Furthermore. found that his colleagues at home were stunned with the kind of information he was able to get from the contractor. its significance and popularity were stressed in each one of the eight projects. the U. face-to-face communication is repeatedly shown to be a powerful tool. Although face-to-face communication is often expensive. face-to-face interaction provides a valuable opportunity for ongoing responsiveness.S. when returning from a visit to Raytheon for a series of face-to-face meetings. the Nobel prize-winning economist. “You’ll be surprised by how much better you do once you get to know the people you’re working with. Herbert Simon. Dennis Mallik. the number of verbal and nonverbal “conversations” that can be conducted simultaneously is almost impossible to replicate with any other media.

This researcher at Caltech. face-to-face communication went a long way toward dispelling his suspicions about my intentions. discovered the power of face-to-face communication when he attempted to offer help to another member of his team. Practice Eight: Be Action-Oriented and Focus on Results What is the most important leg of a tripod? The missing one! Successful project management stands on the following three legs: people. Plans and Situated Actions: The Problem of Human-machine Communication. information. As a matter of fact. with a comparison between the different navigation methods employed by the European and the Trukese navigator: . Frank was also able to ensure that his host would listen to him because he was able to capture his host’s attention. “Hell no!” Frank decided to fly across the country to Caltech to talk with the researcher. I think I can even say that this was the beginning of a fruitful relationship that lasted for the rest of the project. the ground system and flight operations manager at Goddard Space Flight Center. and action.232 Mastering the Leadership roLe in project ManageMent Frank Snow. Yet. responded to Frank’s offer by sending him a blistering email that basically said.” There is no doubt that Frank succeeded because he was willing to listen patiently to his host’s concerns. Frank summed up the results of his trip: “Clearly. who was located about 2. action is regularly ignored. Yet. Lucy Suchman opens her book.300 miles away. I don’t recall after this ever getting another 300-word email from him of the ‘nothank-you-and-please-go-away’ variety. who was terribly suspicious of the Goddard project office.

whose research focus was on “purposeful action. the tide and current. and he steers accordingly.” Suchman. His effort is directed to doing whatever is necessary to reach the objective. from the cases in the book. the sound of the water on the side of the boat. EpiloguE • practicEs for projEct lEadErship 233 “The European navigator begins with a plan—a course—that he has charted according to certain universal principles. The project managers in this book concur. He sets off toward the objective and responds to conditions as they arise in an ad-hoc fashion. . and he carries out his voyage by relating his every move to that plan. the stars. the waves.” concludes that while the European navigator exemplifies the prevailing scientific models of purposeful action. as in an established production process (“geometric order”). for navigation. the differences between the two reflect much more than just styles of thinking and acting. the Trukese method is more suitable when uncertainty is high and the situation is novel and confusing. the clouds. then respond accordingly. he can point to his objective at any moment. However. it is clear that for managing projects. His effort throughout his voyage is directed to remaining ‘on course. such as in the development of a new product using an immature technology or while coping with a disruptive technology (“living order”). Conceivably. but there is clearly a greater use of the Trukese method in the early phases of most cases. and constraints is low. he must first alter the plan. The Trukese navigator begins with an objective rather than a plan. but he cannot describe his course. the fauna. He utilizes information provided by the wind. she believes that ignoring the Trukese navigator is a serious mistake. neither method is superior to the other. The projects in the book employ a mix of these two methods. The differences between these two methods might simply reflect different styles of thinking and acting. Yet.’ If unexpected events occur. environment. The European method is most suitable when uncertainty regarding the task. If asked.

but eventually you reach your goal. Terry Little. As a result. it saves you money. the project manager for Lockheed Martin. It is messy. they fully understood the problem. Still. do the simulation.” . yet we don’t do enough of it because we would like to believe that if we simply get enough smart people together. Larry Lawson. and sometimes you are embarrassed with the results. In the long run. explains that the use of prototyping by Lockheed Martin was one of the key factors in its ability to win the contract. But guess what? In the real world. put them in the model. and it will all come out just like it is supposed to. highlights the use of prototyping by one of their suppliers for the development of the missile. the process allowed them to learn what things they didn’t have to do or be concerned about. As he explains: “Prototyping is a wonderful way of learning. the project manager for the U. The first prototype they built took a long time.S. the second prototype was a better product that took about half as long to build. The reason people want it to be that way is because prototyping is not cheap—it is not cheap in terms of the money or the time required to do it. By the time they started work on the sixth one.234 Mastering the Leadership roLe in project ManageMent The comparison between the working styles of the two navigators highlights the three key components of the current practice: • Planning by action • Management by hands-on engagement • Focus on results Following are three short examples from the eight cases that demonstrate these components. it rarely happens the way we predict with our models. Planning by Action In JASSM. but the end product did not measure up. Air Force. we can run through the numbers.

He wanted it pinned up in everybody’s cubicle. EpiloguE • practicEs for projEct lEadErship 235 Management by Hands-On Engagement In the transferring harbor cranes project. I saw it there every day when I walked up to my desk. and what can I cut out of my work that’s preventing me from getting there? How am I getting distracted from the goal?’” . At first. ‘What’s this guy thinking?’ I said. I had to admit that there was something to it. including weekends and holidays. They worked on it in shifts. Brian Rutledge. I know what we’re doing. recalls the significance of such a gesture to promoting his results-focused orientation: “After Terry said that we were going to be on contract in six months. this is goofy. As one of them underscored: “This was our norm for all the special projects we carried out. we could naturally infect the entire workforce with our passion and energy. We believed that this way we could learn quickly about changes and react in a timely manner. and not less importantly. I thought: ‘Oh man. staying together with the workers and even eating with them.” Focus on Results Sometimes even small gestures can take on far greater meaning than expected.’ When I talked to other people working in the program office. the JASSM financial manager. ‘It’s like we’re in kindergarten.’ But after a few months. but we believe that the role model approach is a more effective motivator. That was it. I just rolled my eyes. I eventually found myself stopping to think: ‘What am I doing to get to that point. the two project leaders were closely involved with the workforce throughout the entire 24/7 operation. and our people expected it. We promised large bonuses to the workers. he directed someone to make a viewgraph stating this goal: Be on contract by July 1. I don’t need to have a reminder on the wall.

they are not so well-defined. control. The cases in this book. in a nutshell. the project manager must be willing and able to make significant changes and to challenge the status quo. and risk-management tools. are adaptive. and often require new learning and changes in patterns of behavior. require leadership. To address these adaptive problems. therefore. but a chart that plotted the results accomplished. they can still be resolved while maintaining the status quo. a distinguished university professor at the University of Michigan: “The argument. .” projects require only plan-driven management. clearly demonstrate that in the real world of “living order. they can be solved with knowledge and procedures already at hand.’” Practice Nine: Lead. doing well. These problems. do not have clear solutions. Other problems. planning well. Although solving these problems might require great flexibility and high responsiveness.” there is a need for both leadership and management. demands both leadership and management. wisest and best of all. So You Can Manage In a world perceived as being in “geometric order. that is. is the one set forth by a Persian proverb: ‘Thinking well is wise. The importance of the focus on results is poignantly captured by Karl Weick. Plan-driven management assumes a relatively predictable world and thus relies primarily on planning. wiser. however. where unexpected events are inevitable and the project is plagued with numerous problems. They just require good managerial skills. A dynamic environment. that is. however.236 Mastering the Leadership roLe in project ManageMent So they kept a chart to measure their progress—not a chart that used the project plan to monitor specific tasks. The final outcome was a mission accomplished in less than five months. Most of these problems are technical.

• Do your utmost to recruit the right people. “embrace the living order concept” and “adjust project practices to the specific context. without being involved in the ongoing management of the project. Thus. The remaining two practices. the project manager actually ends up spending much more time on routine management activities than on leadership activities. • Be action-oriented and focus on results. Using this distinction. Practices requiring nonroutine interventions: • Challenge the status quo. the project manager must selectively choose the cases for which challenging the status quo is vital. without challenging the status quo and solving the adaptive problem . • Use face-to-face communication as the primary communication mode. as the cases presented here demonstrate. the project manager simply does not know when to intervene and what is the best way in which to do so. • Shape the right culture. it is clear that the epilogue includes three practices requiring primarily routine activities and three that demand nonroutine interventions. monitor. EpiloguE • practicEs for projEct lEadErship 237 Another aspect that distinguishes between these two roles is that managers engage in routine activities. Moreover. So which role is more dominant: leadership or management? Does one need to strive to be a manager who is also a leader or vice versa? On the one hand. So maybe management is the dominant role? On the other hand. and anticipate. whereas leaders focus on and generate nonroutine interventions.” can be considered infrastructure practices that affect all other practices. as follows: Practices requiring routine activities: • Plan. to maintain stability.

but by the moments that take our breath away. Project managers are judged primarily not for what they do. can routine management actually proceed. but rather for what their people do. This is where the leadership role has the upper hand. the few incidences in which they act as leaders are what define them in the eyes of their team members as leaders who they willingly follow. without leadership. Thus. there is more to the debate of leadership versus management.” As stated eloquently by an anonymous source. we have discussed leadership and management as if performed by two different people. one always immediately feels that each one of his personalities is an authentic and sincere person. but these roles are intertwined and indistinguishable once you become a successful project manager. even when the project manager performs just routine management activities. Only once the problem is overcome. it is important to understand that leadership attitude and behavior inspire team members. the inquisitive engineer. You simply cannot not follow Ray. the project might simply come to a grinding halt. What you actually become is a project leader. However. when these two roles reside within the same person.” Although most of the time project managers perform managerial activities. So far. However.238 Mastering the Leadership roLe in project ManageMent at hand. His genuine spirit is contagious. “Life is not measured by the number of breaths we take. there is no management! You must lead so that you can manage. That is. Dougal Maclise described Ray Morgan’s effectiveness as the project manager of the Pathfinder project in this way: “Whether one meets the optimist developer. using a nonroutine leadership intervention. . distinguishing between management and leadership is helpful when you first begin shaping your attitude and developing your skills. the experienced builder. or the energetic cowboy.

in evacuation case study. 94 Benjamin (dairy plant building case study). ending. 5 Baer-Riedhart. 125-147 challenges inherent in. 211 Benjamin (evacuation case study). 193-198 schedule-driven project management.Index A ABCs of project management. Ishai. 220 best people (ABCs of project management). 176. 90. 132-135. 203-211 descriptions of. Jenny. 193-211 planning and preparation phase. 232-236 adaptability. 31-32 case studies dairy plant building. 149-151 battalion personnel. 55-65 autonomy. Pete. 76-78. 32-33 adaptive problems. 194. fallacy of. 200. 141-147 evacuation. 25-26 battalion personnel. Jeffrey. 214 Berlin. 8891. 8 Advanced Medium Range Air-to-Air Missile (AMRAAM). 130-141 trust between government and contractors. 125-147 Amrami. Isaiah. 227-229 approval of plan. 100. 229 action orientation. 156-163 Bauer. solving. 83. 10-14 downsizing. 160 Bergson. Chuck. in evacuation case study. relationship with contractors and clients. C. 78. 50 alliances. 176. 156-163 239 B “Bad Management Theories Are Destroying Good Management Practices” (Ghoshal). 143-146. Henri. 39. 149-151 architects. sharing within. 45 C CAIG (Cost Analysis Improvement Group). 71-75. 125-147 adversity. 54-55. 176 Boeing. reactions in. 84-85 AMRAAM (Advanced Medium Range Air-to-Air Missile). 21-22 Anderson. 59. 198-203 splitting and harmonizing the work. 49 AeroVironment Design Development Center. trust and. 83. 219 . 149-169 approval of plan. 224 anticipate (ABCs of project management). 95 Aldridge. 67-69 analytical approach. 125-129 partnership between government and contractors.

importance of. 118-124 context adjusting to. 51-55 versatility of team. relationship with contractors and architects. ending. 203-211 descriptions of. 176 among various locations. 51-70 mutual commitment to goals. 65-70 solar-powered airplane flying. 129-147 inspectors. 47-50 museum building. See also cooperation commitment to goals. 183-192 challenges inherent in downsizing. 193-198 schedule-driven project management. 207-209 suppliers. 67-68 Chiu. 207-209 with various teams. 55-65 communication in ABCs of project management. 175-183. 216-218 project management and leadership in. 171-175 teamwork. 94-99 systems and communication. 13-14 spacecraft building. 22-37 relationship among government. Israel. 198-203 splitting and harmonizing the work. 55-65 government. role of. 71-101 collaboration with local community. Mary. 218-222 chaos. 87-94. 55-65 splitting project into two parts. 30-32 Cost Analysis Improvement Group (CAIG). 31-32 implementation phase. 87-94. 103-124 constant vigilance phase. 8-9 contractors. 38-47 control of project. 175-183 “good enough” requirements. 71-75 relationships with people. 100-101. 55-65 . 171-192 culture of location. 230-232 within systems. See also collaboration with local community between inspectors and contractors. 103-114 risk reduction phase. 151-159 harbor crane transfer. 38-47 teamwork. relationship with clients and architects. order versus.240 Index collaboration with local community. 190-191 Churchill. 38-47. 87-94. 203-211 face-to-face communication. 171-175 teamwork. 179-182. suppliers. 100-101 know your customers’ needs. 4 clients. 171-192 culture of location. Winston. 19-22 mutual commitment to goals. 125-129 challenging the status quo. 19-50 changing perceptions of business. 45-46 as requirement. 100-101. importance of. 175-183 “good enough” requirements. 114-117 missile development. 22-37. 227-229 cooperation. 183-192 cost cutting. 76-87 spacecraft building. 59-64. 183-192 constant vigilance phase (harbor crane transfer case study). 118-124 entrepreneurial phase. importance of. 214-215 Chaskelevitch. 164-169 psychological preparation of defense forces. 193-211 planning and preparation phase. contractors. 76-87 complex projects case studies dairy plant building.

effect on project success. 5 Gillman. 5. 210 Drucker. 229 Fuller. 224-226. 189. 235-236 mutual commitment to. Buckminster. 4 flat organizational structures. Sumantra. 5 entrepreneurial phase (harbor crane transfer case study). 35-36. 124 flying solar-power airplanes. See evacuation case study downsizing case study. 141-147 Dror (dairy plant building case study). 22-37. Allan. 216 fox and hedgehog analogy. 151-159 experience. 156-163 description of. 144-146 goals focus on. 171-175. 71-75. 9 Dryden Flight Research Center. 193-198 schedule-driven project management. 198-199 Creative Evolution (Bergson). Peter. 149-169 approval of plan. 50 Del Frate. Albert. 135. 103-114 Environmental Research Aircraft and Sensor Technology (ERAST). 4 G geometric order. John. 214-215 Ghoshal. 193-211 description of. knowing needs of. Edwards. 88 F face-to-face communication. 232-233 evacuation case study. reflection on. See solar-powered airplane flying case study Forbes. cost-driven project management. Malcolm. 201. 214 culture of location. Tom. 125-129 description of. 224-227 customers. 79. 149-151 battalion personnel. 71-75 241 E Einstein. Trukese navigation versus. 198-203 splitting and harmonizing the work. 220-222 Frandsen. 130-141 trust between government and contractors. 159-161. 175-179. 13 implementation phase. 230-232 The Fifth Discipline Fieldbook. 213 D dairy plant building case study. 71-75 European navigation. 55-65 . 185. 83 David (evacuation case study). 12 partnership between government and contractors. 189-192 disengagement. 203-211 Daniel (evacuation case study). 13-14 planning and preparation phase. 153-154 data memos. 164-169 psychological preparation of defense forces. W. 125-147 challenges inherent in. 167 David Packard Excellence in Acquisition Award. 175-183. living order versus. 82 Deming. 98 de-scoping. ending.

Dougal. 207-209 J Joint Air-to-Surface Standoff Missile (JASSM). 114-117 Harel. 189-192 government. 1-4 Leitzel. 47-50 I Ilan (evacuation case study). 214 Holocaust History Museum. 136-137. relationship with contractors.242 Index “good enough” requirements. Ofer. 216-218 challenging the status quo. 227-229 purposeful action. collaboration with. 236-238 living order versus geometric order. 187-189 independence in project management. 4 harbor crane transfer case study. Dennis. anticipating. 235 Handy. 104-114. 38-47 K Klein. 238 Mallik. 169 hedgehog and fox analogy. 103-114 risk reduction phase. 100-101 location. 93-94. 230-232 leadership versus management. 3. 5 Little. 127. Jackie. monitoring. Kurt. Dan. 216. Amos. Terry. 118-124 description of. 198-203 input on project requirements. 19-50 Joint Direct Attack Munition (JDAM) missile. 99. 50 Lewin. 12 entrepreneurial phase. 224-227 learning from best managers. affecting culture by. 38. geometric order versus. 144. 19. 175-183 Lockheed Martin Integrated Systems. 222. 51-70 L Lawson. 27. 7 from stories. 164-169 implementation reviews. 64-70. 214-215 planning. 219. Shimon. 28-30 inspectors. 161-163. 231 . 40. 171-175 when to ignore. 117-124 Kornfeld. 223 H hands-on management. 52-61. 47. 38-44. 153 harmonizing work after splitting. Larry. 236-238 leadership practices adjusting to context. 103-124 constant vigilance phase. 129-147 suppliers. 119. 222-224 shaping team culture. 19-50. 22 M Maclise. 227. 234 leadership in project management. Arik. 8-9. 220-222 Heraclitus. 203-211 Harpaz. 234-235 living order. Charles. 87-94. 120-124 Klein. 214-215 local community. 218-222 face-to-face communication. 227-229. 104-117. cooperation with contractors. 38-47. 159 implementation phase (evacuation case study). 232-236 recruiting right people.

149-151 battalion personnel. 179-182. 222. European versus Trukese methods. 51-70 mutual commitment to goals. 19-22 mutual commitment to goals. 238 Morris. 226. 38-39 Mifram. 55-65 243 new product development case studies descriptions of. 124 N NASA. 5 Murphy. 94-99. Brock. 19-50 changing perceptions of business. 142 McCready. 164-169 psychological preparation of defense forces. P. Wendy. 214-215 organizational change case studies descriptions of. contractors. Paul. 195-199 oral presentations. 100. 130-141 trust between government and contractors.W. 227-229 Morgan. 149-169 approval of plan. 65-70 O Ofer (dairy plant building case study). 95-97 McDonnell Douglas Aerospace. See project management Margolies. 19-50 changing perceptions of business. suppliers. role of. 125-147 challenges inherent in. 224-225 Massielo. 12-13 downsizing.. 55-65 splitting project into two parts. 141-147 evacuation. written proposals versus. 89. 34-35 order. 51-70 description of. 19-22 description of. 203-211 missile development case study. 11 missile development. 51-55 versatility of team. 11 mutual commitment to goals. 100. 190. 156-163 implementation phase. Ray. 232-233 Nekomoto. contractors. 26-27 mutual commitment to goals. 125-129 partnership between government and contractors. 139. 76. chaos versus. Gerald. 4. 184-187 museum building case study. 51-55 versatility of team. 47-50 museum building.G. 103-114 Mike (dairy plant building case study). 226 . suppliers. management. 22-37. 38-47 teamwork. 80. effect on project success. 38-47 teamwork. 172-174. 138 McCaman. 55-65 splitting project into two parts. 22-37 relationship among government. 11 mutual commitment to goals. 218-219. 151-159 organizational structures. 84. 47-50 monitoring. 65-70 mutual accountability. 22-37 relationship among government. 71-87 navigation. 89-92. Dave. Don.

88 partnership between government and contractor. selecting. leadership practices project management ABCs of. sense of. See leadership practices preparation ending preparation phase. 30-32 “good enough” requirements. 213 relationships with contractors. 178-179. 38-47 with government and contractors. 118-124 entrepreneurial phase. outdated nature of. 232-236 P-Q Pacific Missile Range Facility (PMRF). 28-30 prototyping. 71-101 collaboration with local community.244 Index project management practice. See case studies project leadership. 103-114 risk reduction phase. 85-87 people. 87-94. 151-159 procedures. 130-141. 193-198 psychological preparation of defense forces. 11-12 harbor crane transfer. 100-101 know your customers’ needs. 114-117 solar-powered airplane flying. See also teamwork Pathfinder. 151-159 purposeful action. 178-179. importance of relationships with. developing. 103-124 constant vigilance phase. 222-224 PERT (Program Evaluation and Review Technique) charts. 193-198 role of. 80-83 product development. 94-101 relocation. 236 planning by action. importance of. 229 leadership in. 232 PMRF (Pacific Missile Range Facility). 234 psychological preparation of defense forces. 84 plan approval. government. See leadership in project management. 47. risk and. in evacuation case study. 171-175 input on. 174-175 reflection on experience. 71. 129-141 with people. 88 practices. See also leadership practices detachment from research. 7 project management research detachment from practice. See new product development case studies Program Evaluation and Review Technique (PERT) charts. 234 ending planning phase. 4-6 learning from best managers. 94-101 personnel. See evacuation case study repeated and risky tasks case studies descriptions of. 222-224 redundancy. 4-6 learning from best managers. 227-229 Plans and Situated Actions: The Problem of Human-machine Communication (Suchman). 156-163. 149-151 plan-driven management. 8-9. 156-163. 71-75 . 7 project management theories. 26-27 project requirements cost as. 176. suppliers. 84 project examples. 236-238 R recruiting personnel. 4-6 project ownership.

171-177. redundancy and. 125-134. John. 94-99 systems and communication. 224-227 versatility of team. 171-175 teamwork. Ariel. 222 team members (ABCs of project management). 149-151 Simon. 183-192 between government and contractor. 45. 65 sharing within alliances. 43 Snow. 24 schedule-driven project management. 182. See project requirements research. 24 Skunk Works. 218-222 Stokley. See also personnel teamwork cooperation within. Fredrick. 51-54. relationships with people. 178-179. 87-94. 100-101 description of. relationship with government and contractors. 174-175 risk reduction phase (harbor crane transfer case study). 23. 8 theories of project management. 180-181 . Lynda. 65-70 technical problems. learning from. 52. 223. 175-183 description of. 76-87 requirements. importance of. 84-85 Sharon. 222-224 settlement relocation. Edgar. 235 Rutledge. Lucy. See also case studies Suchman. George. 126-128. Moshe. 225 selecting personnel. 219 Stone. Avner. focus on. 156-163. importance of. importance of. 38-47 sustain (ABCs of project management). 31. 51-55. 192. 76-87 T Taylor. Herbert. 33-34 245 S Safdie. 71-101 collaboration with local community. 176. 171-192 culture of location. solving. importance of. 183-192 splitting projects into parts. 232 Sudan. 198-203 Schein. 141-144. 231 Single Acquisition Management Plan (SAMP). 11-12 know your customers’ needs. 35. 94-99 systems and communication. 4-6 Thurber. 71-75 relationships with people. Judy. 35-36. outdated nature of. 235-236 risk. Frank. 1-4. 141 suppliers. 176 systems. See evacuation case study Shalev. 189 stories. 13 “good enough” requirements. 65 SAMP (Single Acquisition Management Plan). 203-211 status quo. See project management research results. 22. 76-87 spacecraft building case study. 26. 114-117 Rutledge. Edward. challenging. 38. 47-50. importance of. 9. Brian. 232 solar-powered airplane flying case study. 130-141 shaping team culture.

217. Bob. oral presentations versus. 74 Worsham. 225. 25-26 between government and contractor. 112 . 236 Westphal. 51-70 Yaron (evacuation case study). 65-70 von Mehlem. 194-211. 156-163. See harbor crane transfer case study Tri-Service Standoff Attack Missile (TSSAM). 76-87 V Vaill. Peter. 138 written proposals. Judi. 72-73. 20 Z Zaleznik. 220. Jerry. 219. 214 versatility of team. 3 Unmanned Aerial Vehicle (UAV) technology. Abraham. 167-169. 141 Whitehead. 34-35 Y Yad Vashem. 232-233 trust autonomy and. 214 Zvika (dairy plant building case study). 5 unlearning.246 Index transferring harbor cranes. 223 Yitzhak (harbor crane transfer case study). European navigation versus. 106-107. 164. 184-185 W-X Weick. 20 Trukese navigation. 72-73. Jon. 76-87 “The Underlying Theory of Project Management Is Obsolete” (Koskela and Howell). 141-147 TSSAM (Tri-Service Standoff Attack Missile). 230 U UAV (Unmanned Aerial Vehicle) technology. Karl.

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